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Unread 9th of November, 2004, 21:34
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Rebis

“ "Landon is - is very dear to me, Rebis. I can't just wait around while people discuss the 'right' thing to do next. Will you help me?" ”
Before Rebis can reply, a flash of light descends from the chandelier overhead, and Rebis and Gray find themselves standing on a marble floor of black, with silver filigree.

Rebis feels the transport as if through a gateway, a connection betwen two shadows, in a manner he finds very unfamiliar. It was so fast, and so unexpected, that he had no time to react.

The room is about forty feet by twenty. Stained glass windows let in beams of light, which must be artificial because they intersect at various places on the floor. The room is in the form of a place of worship, with an altar and places to kneel, or sit farther back. There is no door.

A gorgeous, idealized painting of Corwin adorns the wall above the altar, and draws the eyes of the two. As they look at it, they hear a chuckle, and a kin of clicking sound, from behind them.

"Amusing, this place, isn't it?" They turn to see a slim man of ordinary height, colored rather like Rebis - whitish skin, white hair bound back in a simple ponytail. "A temple to worship one as a god, who then chanced to ascend to such heights after the fact. The problem is, of course, that godhood has a way of making lesser concerns...well, even lesser, don't you think?"

Last edited by Wired*Nun; 9th of November, 2004 at 21:36.
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Unread 9th of November, 2004, 21:49
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Faced suddenly with the painted likeness of Corwin, Gray is unable to stop a small, animal-like sound of pure terror from escaping her lips.

She shrinks back against one wall, as far as she can get from the image, Rebis and the newcomer, looking between Rebis and the other man with equal suspicion, eyes bright and face feral in the multi-coloured light.

Control slipping, she feels her fingernails shift to claws, her eyes to wolf silver, teeth sharpen...then - just - she takes hold of herself again.

"Who...are you?" her voice comes out as little more than a whisper, forced past the fear in her throat.
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Last edited by chalice; 9th of November, 2004 at 21:57. Reason: spelling
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Unread 9th of November, 2004, 21:57
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"He is Merlin's brother, Mandor Sawahl."

How did he achieve this? The Logrus defence didn't even slow it down...

"It would seem so, from what I have learned. Why have you brought us here, Mandor?"
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Unread 9th of November, 2004, 23:11
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"Oh, it wasn't me, Rebis, I'm just a reluctant servant of the Crown. You're not following the script, so I'm here to do an edit. Can't go spilling the beans this early in the play, can we?" Mandor stands, his left hand absentmindedly rotating three metal balls with his fingertips, palm upwards. "Pardon me for the abrupt transport, but it was safer than other alternatives. Your pardon also, milady. Allow me to introduce myself. I am Mandor, of the house of Sawall. Half-brother, if the truth be known. Older half-brother, not to put too fine a point on it." He makes a sweeping bow to Gray, right hand almost touching the floor. His ruffled white shirt and black trousers make him look like a prestidigitator or a player in an acting troupe, rather than one of the more powerful nobles of Chaos.

"To retrieve Rebis, it was necessary to take you along as well, as it seemed that he was not going to be separated from you any time soon, and he cannot be allowed to warn Amber at this time. For that, I apologise, and assure you that you will be returned your freedom just as soon as it is feasible."

Rebis does see that the Logrus is active in Mandor, and there are some very interesting interconections among the metal balls, some constructs of sorcery, and the Logrus tendrils swirling around Mandor's hand. It may be worth whatever inconvenience just to learn how all that works...

Last edited by Wired*Nun; 9th of November, 2004 at 23:14.
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Unread 9th of November, 2004, 23:28
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“ Originally Posted by Wired*Nun "To retrieve Rebis, it was necessary to take you along as well, as it seemed that he was not going to be separated from you any time soon, and he cannot be allowed to warn Amber at this time. For that, I apologise, and assure you that you will be returned your freedom just as soon as it is feasible." ”
It's a strange captor, that apologises to a captive...

"You took us too late, demon lord. Word will reach Amber without us," says Gray, as evenly as she can.

Don't make him angry, ma petite. Let me talk to him...you are out of your depth, non?

Something about the Chaos lord appeals to the personality Gray's analyst used to label 'Three', and her form reacts involuntarily to the lilting French voice in her head. As if it might help, she presses both hands (human now, slender and lovely) to her temples, covering her ears.

No! I don't want you, go away...

"Go away..." she whispers, though not, seemingly, to either of the men present.
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Last edited by chalice; 10th of November, 2004 at 02:37.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 01:03
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"Demon lord? I don't think I have any demon blood, but one never knows for sure around here. And heresay will reach Amber, I am sure, but that's quite different from a live witness to events. Hmmmm...milady, you seem to be having a certain amount of difficulty, would you like some assistance?" He takes several slow steps toward her, holding out his right hand as if to touch her face with the back of his fingertips.

"I can bolster your control of your abilities...and, given time, I can teach you how to make that improvement permanent. We of Chaos have some small experience with such changes and...discomfitures. Let me help." His expression is regal, but kind; detatched, but supremely confident. He could do it...
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 01:09
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Glancing at Agraynel, he notes her fluctuating appearance with concern

"Please accept my apologies, I deeply regret that you have suffered such an intolerable act as a result of meeting me."

As Mandor moves towards Agraynel Rebis steps between them, anger flaring in his eyes, his tone remains calm however, neutral and measured

She probably doesn't need my help, but I am the reason she has been kidnapped liked this..I owe her some assistance for that

"I was not aware there was a script to be followed, Mandor. Clearly if I had known I would never have dreamt of inconveniencing you all so by actually acting with some semblance of free will. Perhaps you would be so good as to explain what is intended now?"

As he speaks Rebis is studying their surroundings, seeking signs of the expected wards that might prevent their escape and any possible weakpoints within such barriers.

Last edited by Tamarind; 10th of November, 2004 at 01:14.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 01:25
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Gray continues to watch Mandor like a rabbit trapped in headlights, her expression fearful. Not afraid of him so much now as her own urge to say yes, make it stop, take it away...help me...

She is actually raising one hand slowly towards his when Rebis steps between them and speaks, at which point she snatches it back to cover her mouth.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 01:31
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The room is composed of a pocket shadow, with at least one Way located near the back of the chapel. There is no other way to leave, as far as he can tell.

"Rebis, shall we not put off our debate until the lady has had an opportunity to regain her composure?" His voice takes on a somewhat colder tone, as he goes on, "Or are you denying her my assistance for some particular reason?" His right hand falls as Rebis interposes himself, and his left hand comes up, threat implicit in the floating metal spheres.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 02:36
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He is quick to threaten, perhaps not surprising given his reputation

"I seek to deny the lady nothing, Lord Mandor, her choices are her own to make. I merely wished to allow her a moment to reflect on your generous offer - if she chooses to avail herself of your assistance I would not presume to interfere."

Would that others extended the same courtesy...
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 02:53
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Him or me, petite? Him or me...you want to let go, don't you?...

I know who I am. Who I am is nobody.

Gray looks back at Mandor.

"Help me," she says.

Please help me.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 03:07
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At Agraynel's words Rebis steps aside, concern showing for a moment in his eyes. He continues to observe Mandor closely, dividing his attention between him and the Way

Objectively if he were to be distracted it would be an ideal moment to seek to depart...but I will not leave her at Mandor's mercy until I know more of his motives. She put her trust in me.

Also I am curious as to whether he and Merlin really do espouse this madness of Corwin's. And this weave around his hand is intriguing...

Last edited by Tamarind; 10th of November, 2004 at 03:36.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 21:50
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A slight smile comes to Mandor's ageless face. A smooth juggle, and one of the spheres floats toward Gray. "Step away from the wall, please, just a little." Assuming she does so, the sphere begins a slow rotation around her head, at about a foot's distance.

Gray immediately feels a damping of the urge to shift, to change, to react. The voices in her mind fade, leaving her clear-headed, as clear-minded as she has ever been since waking up. Like a soothing balm on a chronic wound, the relief is palpable, and powerful. There is a silence in her own psyche that promises peace. Is this what normal people feel like?

From Rebis' point of view, the logrus tendril passes through the sphere, then divides. There are delicate microtendrils, dozens of them, probing and pushing at the boundaries of her mind, readjusting. After about thirty seconds, it stabilizes, collapsing and detaching itself from the sphere, forming a net around her head.

"That will maintain itself for some time, perhaps as long as a week, especially if you refrain from shapeshifting. The more you shift, or do other things like use Trump, it will degrade. If you access Pattern, it will probably cause a tremendous headache, and will destroy the effect in short order."

"More permanent solutions would involve exercises we teach our kind to help them control their shapeshifting and the madness that can result from Logrus. These are well within your capability, if you care to learn, but it will take time."

Turning to Rebis, he says blandly, "Now, shall we discuss this like proper Lords of Chaos, or shall we test each other's prowess in the Arts? Or shall we fight a duel? All are allowable, as Suhuy doubtless taught you."
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 23:32
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“ Originally Posted by Wired*Nun "That will maintain itself for some time, perhaps as long as a week, especially if you refrain from shapeshifting. The more you shift, or do other things like use Trump, it will degrade. If you access Pattern, it will probably cause a tremendous headache, and will destroy the effect in short order." ”
Any of the things I might have tried for escape...

"And so you netralise my madness and me at the same time?"

With tears of sheer relief still wet on her face, Gray is unable to feel bitter at the cage she has just walked into so willingly - the silence and stillness just feel too good. Too good to risk losing.

"I expect it is foolish to thank you for that, but I do anyway."


“ Originally Posted by Wired*Nun "More permanent solutions would involve exercises we teach our kind to help them control their shapeshifting and the madness that can result from Logrus. These are well within your capability, if you care to learn, but it will take time." ”
Be a good girl, and there'll be sweeties later...but where else could I find such aid? Not from my own people...to be able to feel like this all the time...what would that be like? What woud I be like?

Gray gives him the ghost of her old, sweet smile and goes on marvelling at the wonderful feeling of peace and clarity as Mandor and Rebis talk.
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Unread 10th of November, 2004, 23:57
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Rebis watches with undisguised interest, fascination replacing thoughts of escape as he studies the weaves - and attempts to determine their purpose

He certainly seems to have done as he offered, though I would be happier if I could confirm that these weaves do only as he suggested. That would take me much longer to determine though - clearly there is much I could learn from him, were circumstances to permit it.

Such is his focus that Mandor's words and suggestion of a duel take him somewhat by surprise,

"I have always preferred reason to conflict, Lord Mandor, I would welcome the opportunity to discuss this situation - particularly as it seems we may have similar sentiments. Perhaps first you could clarify your earlier comments - you described yourself as a reluctanct servant of the Crown in this matter?"

Last edited by Tamarind; 11th of November, 2004 at 00:13.
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 21:58
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“ "And so you neutralise my madness and me at the same time?" ”
"And offer you the key to its undoing, yes."

“ "I expect it is foolish to thank you for that, but I do anyway." ”
His look somewhat mock-severe, he says, "It is never foolish to thank someone for a gift, no matter what the circumstances."

“ Perhaps first you could clarify your earlier comments - you described yourself as a reluctanct servant of the Crown in this matter?" ”
"Before I answer you, let us sit and break bread together. It may smooth things somewhat..."

Walking to the back of the chapel, he gestures at a comfortable setting of sofa and chairs, a low table between. The Way is easily visible right there in the floor, just a few steps from Rebis.

The balls disappear into his clothing somewhere, and Mandor makes a complex gesture in the air, bringing forth a setting of coffee, tea, biscuits and petite-fours, on a sparkling white tablecloth. That spell wasn't hung...he cast it from scratch, faster than anyone I've ever seen...I hope that's just because he has a great deal of practice with culinary magic...

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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 22:13
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“ Originally Posted by Wired*Nun The balls disappear into his clothing somewhere, and Mandor makes a complex gesture in the air, bringing forth a setting of coffee, tea, biscuits and petite-fours, on a sparkling white tablecloth. That spell wasn't hung...he cast it from scratch, faster than anyone I've ever seen...I hope that's just because he has a great deal of practice with culinary magic... ”
Gray moves over to perch on the edge of one of the chairs, carefully choosing a position that means she doesn't have to look at Corwin's portrait.

"If I am to accept your hospitality, I should give you my name," she says to Mandor. "It's Agraynel, but I prefer Gray, if you would care to use that?"
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 22:31
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Posting for Tam

[OOC: Post for Rebis sent to Chalice via email as Tam has lost Internet connection just now]


Impressive skill indeed. And a promising start hopefully...

Rebis pauses whilst Gray introduces herself then bows and moves to one of the chairs, setting his precious bundle on the floor beside him. "Thank you, Lord Mandor. I would be honoured to break bread with you"
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 22:44
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The lights overhead flicker a bit, though a glance above shows nothing but magical chandeliers. He bows again, gravely. "I am pleased to meet you, Lady Agraynel. Again, I apologise for the delay, but as we all know, one ignores royal requests at one's peril. This segues nicely into Lord Rebis' question regarding my actions and motivations."

"The King asked me for a favor, and I owe him several. For me, as long as there is no fundamental conflict with my own values, I treat a request of this nature as an instruction. However, I have broad discretion." Here, a slight smiles plays about his lips, and he turns to address Rebis. "I was asked to delay you for some time, to give events a chance to run their course without your interference. I chose to do it in this manner, and would fain view it as whiling away the time chatting with my extended family, than acting as jailer. You may choose to view your circumstances similarly, or you may rail against inevitability. I have prepared enough safeguards to handle any eventuality. I only regret that I did not have you brought here sooner, and so avoid having to inconvenience the young Lady. Still, it has its benefits. I am something of a devotee of the ladies of Amber."
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 22:53
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"You need not regret that," says Gray softly. "if you had taken Rebis sooner, I would have missed something I have greatly longed for - news of my brother. It is worth some...inconvenience...to know that he is alive."
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 23:15
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"It seems I should thank you for choosing to perform his request in this civilised fashion, Lord Mandor. I am genuinely pleased to have this opportunity to meet with you, though I will not pretend that I enjoy having my freedom curtailed in this manner. I mean no disrespect but I would have thought that there were less drastic means His Majesty King Merlin could have employed, such as perhaps communicating his desires to me? With no knowledge of the script he apparently wishes me to follow it is unsurprising that I erred from it... And I confess I still do not understand why he would wish to conceal these actions of Corwin's at all - without knowledge of Corwin's involvement it would seem all but inevitable Amber will conclude that Chaos has assaulted the Patterns, surely not a desirable outcome?"
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 23:20
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Absent-mindedly, her attention on the two Chaos Lords, Gray reaches for a biscuit and begins to nibble.
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Unread 11th of November, 2004, 23:33
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"Ahh, to be so young. Rebis...do you suppose that the Courts are somehow united in their desires? Do you think they are devoid of backstabbing, politicking, jockeying for advantage? Merlin keeps them all struggling with each other, with him as the most powerful politician of them all. But the art of ruling is the art of threat and promise, carrot and stick. If one has to carry out a threat, one has already made a mistake. So what do you imagine would happen if Merlin were to lay out the whole thing in front of the Assembly of the Houses?"
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Unread 12th of November, 2004, 00:16
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"I concede that my experience of politics is limited - after all my upbringing did not afford me many opportunities in that sphere - but I do appreciate that there are many competing factions with widely differing agendas,"

A slight smile touches his lips,

"after all even a cursory study would reveal as much..but I did not suggest that His Majesty should make a speech declaring his intentions to all, merely that if he wished me to follow a particular course of action then perhaps he should have instructed me as to what that course might be?"
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Unread 12th of November, 2004, 00:37
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"Blithely implying that you would have followed royal instructions before is begging the question. Issuing such instructions is in itself risky. Perhaps you would refuse. Perhaps someone would find about that it was a mission rather than a whim of yours. Perhaps he did not wish your actions to be traceable to him. Perhaps he gambled on his expectation of your leanings, and lost. Who would have thought you'd go directly to Amber with this information, in the face of so many reasons not to." He pours himself a cup of coffee, and continues.

"So this is now in the nature of damage control. Why did you decide to run to Amber, rather than, for example, to seek counsel of someone you trust in Chaos? You are one of Suhuy's favorite pupils...as I was so long ago. He would have heard you out, and perhaps, dissuaded you. Or is that why you did not? That you did not wish to be dissuaded? When the fate of universes hangs in balance, are you operating on personal prejudices and desires?" He waves an airy hand, saying, "Well, at least you won't be the first one to do that."
 

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