[3 Chirreb 4261]
Short Shameful Confession, part 1
Perhaps the silliest spell that true adventurers regularly
might wish to cast is The Raven’s Beak. There’s a
very sensible family of spells called Armor Turning
Something — Armor Turning Corpador to try
to deflect attacks from claws and teeth, Armor Turning
Herbador to try to deflect attacks from wooden clubs and
spears, and so on. It’s a very easy spell. It lasts, oh, a
minute or something. Useful, especially for someone who
doesn’t know it and suddenly needs to spont it.
The Raven’s Beak is kind of like that, except that
(1) it doesn’t last as long, and (2) it protects against all
twelve Nouns and (3) it’s barely better than nothing. There
is a little point to it — if you’ve got to pick one
bound defense spell, I suppose, and couldn’t bind or afford
anything good, you might pick it.
But … some parts are really stupid. Like, it turns aside
missiles made of Mentador and Tempador. How likely is it
for someone to shoot bits of thought or seconds at you in
ways that will cause you physical injury? [Answer for
sarcastic monsters: not likely at all. Pretty much
Nope — it’s just an efficient way of using all the Nouns
and two Verbs when you’re on adventure, so that you get the
benefit of exercising them.
I am ashamed to admit that I did, indeed, spend half the
night grafting that spell. I am ashamed to admit that I
did, indeed, cast it when I was waiting for Vae. Not that
it could have stopped anything she chose to do to me, except
if she were to somehow decide to club me to death with a
stick without using magic.
I won’t be ashamed to be better at magic, though. It’s not
as if anyone won’t know how it happened.
For those who are counting: eighteen heroes by the Halflight
Gate, including a still-apologetic Strenata.
For those who care about clothing, Vae showed up in her
true shape, wearing a sort of purple pyjama kind of
thing. Not stylish. the purple pyjama thing wasn’t stylish
Me:“Good morning, Vae.”
Vae:“Hiio! How’re you? The spell you cast is
Me:“Just trying out a new spell I grafted last
Vae:[flopping on the ground and staining the
purple pyjama thing with grass]“It’s odd … what does it
Me:“Just a temporary protective spell.”
Vae:“From me? There’s no sort of harm I’d do
to you, Sythyry.”
Me:“Well … actually I need to talk about
Vae:“What sort of a talk?”
Me:“You put this big heavy umbrella spell on me
Vae:“I did, truly.”
Me:“It could have killed me.”
Vae:“An umbrella spell?”
So I had to explain to her about various matters of biology
and the availablity of this and that kind of magic. Yes, of
course Vheshrame can break spells like that (I presume I was
correct here — I didn’t check) but it is embarrassing to be
put in a position where I have to ask for such things. I
had stayed up half the night trying to find a way to say
that that didn’t make the city seem weak.
And, of course, we had The Conversation again. This makes four.
Then, naturally, I had to spend a third of an hour
comforting an eye-ripped kitten of a nendrai for
somewhat-too-nearly killing me. This experience compares
favorably to the experience of comforting her for being vile
to my mind…. it’s not nearly as disturbing nearly being
killed as having a whole language shoved into my head.
Vae:“It’s never again that I’ll cast a spell on
you without giving you your asking, Sythyry.”
A ninth of an hour later, of course, she did it. She’d
turned back to her big shape, and we were talking about one
of the stories in the book of a while ago, and she tried to
hand me the book. Well, I can’t hold a book that big with
one hand, and it’s awkward with two. So she turned me as
big as her.
I gently pointed out to her that she had just cast a spell
on me without asking.
Actually, it was fairly obvious, since I’d been sitting on a
branch, well large enough to support a right-sized Zi Ri,
but not nearly big enough to support a vastly oversized
I felt obliged to point out what she had done. (The
Conversation, round 5).
Vae:[rekittening] Cry, cry, cry
Then, recklessly and foolishly, I noted that a log had left
a long gash in my flank.
Mutoc-based healing hurts amazingly. I’m sure they heard me
in Vheshrame. Maybe even in Daukhrame — one can make a
great deal of noise when one is huge.
And naturally she hadn’t asked me about healing it. So we
had to have The Conversation again (round 6).
This time she didn’t get weepy. She got furious at herself,
ripping at her arms and chest with huge fangs, putting
terrible curses on herself, and all like that. I tried
shouting, then creating water on her, then poking her with a
broken part of a tree to get her attention, but her
defensive spells are exceedingly good.
Still, you can’t have that kind of a fight so close to the
city wall without people noticing, even if it’s just a fight
with yourself. All eighteen of the heroes were out to us
within a ninth of an hour. That got Vae’s attention, at
least, and she calmed down. (Note to self and to the
Vheshrame guard reading this report: No matter how upset you
get Vae, as soon as there’s any actual danger that she can
sense, she’s instantly calm and prepared.)
The situation was duly explained. I asked to be turned back
to my usual size, and I was … um … more or less. I
think I’m a touch larger. I had Ghirbis measure me; I’ll
know for sure in a few weeks when Vae’s spell wears off.
(She can’t actually break spells, of course: that’s
Healoc when it’s done best. So she put a shrinking spell on
me that neutralizes the growth spell, as best as she can
figure. Certainly not worth doing a lot of work to fix the
I even gave Vae a few snacks, in
exchange for a few vegetable pearls, which was the original
plan for the day.
Short Shameful Confession, part 2
It works. I might indeed be able to cast some useful
Tempador spells sometime soon.