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    In a world where day to day life runs on magic, none are more honored or admired than the weavers, mages who can unite individual spells into complex weaves of magic. Once apprenticed to the greatest weaver in the known world, Rori works now as a lowly stitch--a magic repair person-- hiding from her past, and the terrible event that changed everything.

    But despite how hard she's worked to leave her past behind, Rori's past is about to find HER, in deadly fashion. Now she'll have to learn to tell friend from foe. Is Fox, who claims to be following her for her own protection, really who he claims to be? What should she make of the Ril, a young girl who can hear others' thoughts as easily as birdsong, or Proteus, the brutal warrior who first tries to kill Fox, then claims to be Ril's protector.

    Is anyone who they seem? And more importantly, who is it that's hunting Rori? Could it be the dead have returned to take their revenge?




World
    In the world of SeM, magic has been studied and developed much like science was for us, and it is used for all sorts of everyday tasks like communication (magic mirrors), heating (hot boxes), cooling (ice boxes and cool winds) etc. Though the world of SeM has communication and information networks, and other things we would consider equivalent to modern tech, they are almost pre-industrial in some specific areas such as transportation and medicine.



Weavers and Stitches (Magic Creation, Maintenance and Repair)
    Because magic is more intuitive than logical, and by its very nature fluid and changeable, very few people have the skills necessary to create spells. People who can are called weavers, because they interweave unstable or questionable elements into a complete whole. Because of their importance and rarity, weavers limit themselves to the creation of individual spells and weaves (spells that are made up of multiple spells working together). Everyday maintenance and repair is performed by Stitches, a guild of people who cannot create, but have enough understanding of how spells work to repair them. The weavers vs. stitches relationship in the world of SeM can be compared to programmers vs, tech support in our society.

    Most people in the world of SeM never travel more than 5 miles from their homes their entire lives. Stitches, on the other hand, tend to be nomadic, traveling from one duchy to the next as the fancy takes them. Whether as a cause or a result of this, Stitches tend to be rebels or free-spirits. In every area there is a spool house--a sort of boarding house where stitches can get food, lodging, and spell components they might need for fixing things. When a person has a problem with their household spells, they contact the spool house, and the lead (head of the spool house) picks from the stitches currently there to go take care of it.
User Image Name: Rori (no meaning) aka “Ice Princess”
Song: “Little House” by The Fray
Associated Imagery: Looking over her shoulder (as if looking at her past). Filigree work (gold and silver)

Age: early to mid 20's
Hair: dirty blond/light light brown
Height: 5'7”
Build: medium, lightly toned. She's not an athlete, but it's obvious she doesn't do much sitting around either.

Clothes/ Style: Rori is all about her work, but she also considers herself “above” it. So she wears practical clothes which are neat and tailored to her figure, but in forgettable colors and styles. She doesn't want to stand out, but can't help a little bit of vanity about how she presents herself professionally.

Occupation: Stitch (magical repair person - see first post for info)

Personality: Rori earned the nickname “Ice Princess” thanks to her obvious aloofness. Rori is a very good stitch, and she knows it . In fact, she is one of the best (she would say THE best) and while she doesn't brag, she isn't modest about it either.

This is because Rori was once an apprentice weaver, but BIG BAD THINGS happened, and she is now on the run. She uses her skills as a former weaver to hide in the constantly mobile life of a stitch, but she resents working in what she sees as such a menial position, and her lost future and the accolades of being a weaver.

Rori is an orphan, from a poor but loving family. Rori is the eldest, her parents had long been unable to have children, but a few years after they adopted her, her parents did start having natural children. Though her parents never treated her differently, Rori always felt a certain inferiority to her siblings, and this, and her family's poverty have resulted in a deep and burning drive for “success,” to prove herself, to win the accolades and acknowledgment of others.

Rori was never the most trusting soul, and given her current situation, gets suspicious of others at the drop of a hat.


Reference images:
  • Reference sheet
  • Full color portrait
  • Various refs - Of particular interest in this folder are some items of clothing I could see Rori wearing (by cut and shape, not necessarily color). Feel free to use them for inspiration. The "notquite" picture was drawn before the clothing rules of SeM were established, so this costume wouldn't work (the fabric is not stiff enough, there aren't visible seams, etc) but some aspects of it look very similar to the formal weaver uniforms. Similar cut/shape, and pattern on the back.


Quote:

Relationships with other characters

Fox:
  • deep mistrust (she doesn't buy his “following you cause you are in danger and need help” or his claims to amnesia)
  • grudging trust (after he saves her life she still doesn't think he is who he says he is, but has to acknowlege if he wanted her dead, she would be already and she owes him one now)
  • attraction (eventually, but would never admit it. Barely even admits it to herself)


Ril:
  • indifference/scientific curiosity (when she only knows of her)
  • pity (when she finally sees her as a real person)
  • care (as the journey continues)


Proteus:
  • mistrust (only keeps him along because she doesn't want him to go solo with Ril in tow
  • bristling dislike(when he assumes that because she is a woman, she should know about caring for Ril and be the one to do most of it)


Sig:
  • mild annoyance (though he hits on her like he does everything with tits, it's not often enough to anger her, and though he merits her suspicion by simply breathing, she mostly sees him as harmless)


Ciara:
  • appreciation (its nice having another woman around, especially one as level-headed and resourceful as Ciara)

User Image Name: Fox (no meaning)
Song: “Umbrella” by No More Kings
Associated Imagery: Red rock landscape. Wildflowers, especially scarlet gilia

Age: ??? (appears early to mid 20's)
Hair: Dark dark brown - black
Height: 5'10”
Build: athletic (think quarterback)

Clothes/ Style: Utilitarian. Likes vests and jackets. Belts and pockets for holding tools. Prefers blue, black, and red. Sturdy fabrics and shoes.

Occupation: Stitch (magical repair person - see first post for info)

Personality: In personality, Fox is a boy scout. That is, he believes in doing the right thing just because it's the right thing to do. He is friendly, personable, and easy-going so he tends to be well-liked wherever he goes. He's an idealist and an optimist. This doesn't mean he is naïve though.

Fox is an amnesiac and cannot remember anything before 3 years ago. He claims to have been found by an old man, a stitch who trained him in his trade. Fox stayed with the old man, who was going blind, helping him to work. When the old man died a year ago, Fox launched out on his own.

Fox has no curiosity about his past and is happy with his life as it is now.


Reference images:
  • Reference sheet
  • Full color portrait
  • Various refs - The photo is a pretty good representation of what Fox would look like if he were a real person. Fox's vest is based off/inspired by doublets, so I included some pictures of those to give an idea of variations.


Quote:

Relationships with other characters

Rori:
  • respects and is impressed by her abilities as a stitch
  • friendliness (wants to get to know her better)
  • good samaritan concern for someone in danger
  • love (eventually, but won't say so especially after he finds out about his past)


Ril:
  • good samaritan concern for someone unjustly treated.
  • affection (as time goes on)


Proteus:
  • wariness (particularly since he tried to kill him)
  • doesn't trust but wants to
  • considers him “part of the team” (despite the above)


Sig:
  • camaraderie and bemusement


Ciara:
  • friendly
  • feels bad for her situation
Name: Ril (Short for Amaryllis, a kind of flower)
Song: "Haunted" by Poe
Associated Imagery: The color white. Flowers, especially amaryllis

Age: hard to tell. Between 7 and 13
Hair: black long, stringy and unkempt
Height: 4'
Build: willowy and underfed

Clothes/ Style: Initially Ril had only the thin shift they kept her in in the experiment halls. When he ran away with her, Proteus gave her one of his tunics (which dwarfs her) and which she often wears like a dress, tied with rope or belt around her waist. Much MUCH later in the story as she begins to gain control of her mind, she starts to pick out clothes that are sweet and girlish (petticoats, lace, pastel colors, etc).

Occupation: experiment

Personality: Catatonic. Ril has the unusual ability to hear others' thoughts. She had a nice upbringing, on a farm with a family who loved her. But when her entire family was killed by a plague, and her abilities were discovered by others, she became a magical experiment at a leading university. Weavers tried to understand how she had the abilities she did. Unfortunately, Ril had never learned to shut out other people's thoughts, and in such a large city, the sheer number of minds left her catatonic, unable to find herself amidst the tumult of thousands of others' thoughts.

Ril begins to open up a bit as they get away from the city. She is shy, and frightened, and clings to Proteus (who she comes to call Teus). Even away from the city, she is haunted by the thoughts she has shared and the things she has seen. Proteus begins teaching her to control and sort her thoughts from those of others through meditation.


Reference images:
  • Reference sheet
  • Traveling - Proteus typically carries Ril on his arm while traveling.
  • Face refs - These photos were selected for appropriate age and similar facial features. Hair color, clothing, etc. are not necessarily reflective of Ril.


Quote:

Relationships with other characters

Rori:
  • Likes her (Views her as a big sister, and someone to aspire to be like.)


Fox:
  • Likes him (He's like a big, fun older brother.)


Proteus:
  • Love (He is her rock and protector, and he is the most important person in the world to her.)


Sig:
  • Entertaining. (Also like a big brother, but sillier than Fox.)


Ciara:
  • Awe (She is awed by her beauty.)
  • Likes her (She sees her almost like a sister also.)

Name: Proteus (no meaning)
Song: "Vienna" by The Fray
Associated Imagery: stones/rocks, crows, the moon

Age: early to mid 20's?
Hair: light brown, caesar cut
Height: 6'2”
Build: Massive. Like a rock, or a body builder.

Clothes/ Style: Wears plated armor, almost constantly, despite the inconveniences this creates.

Occupation: Bodyguard and ????

Personality: Stoic. Uncommunicative. Like a rock. Single minded. The only emotion he shows with any regularity is anger, and even that isn't often. Proteus is stubborn and defines himself by his purpose. To Proteus, all things and all people have a function/purpose. He views anyone unwilling or unable to LIVE their purpose with the greatest contempt. His purpose is everything to Proteus, though he isn't always open with the others on what that purpose is.

Proteus is a cipher, never speaking of his past or his current goals. Eventually Proteus gets brought on with the mystery they are investigating, and proves to have great tactical insight.

Even then Proteus is still a loner. And sometimes he leaves the group and appears to be talking to himself, reporting what is going on, but he always makes sure he is out of hearing or sight range of the others.


Reference images:
  • Reference sheet
  • Traveling - Proteus typically carries Ril on his arm while traveling.
  • Various refs - Some early sketches and action-y pose, etc. I particularly like the early sketch of his face. I think the "movie-star" picture of Proteus can be a useful reference.


Quote:

Relationships with other characters

Rori:
  • Indifferent (assumes that as a woman she knows child rearing and can take care of Ril. When he finds this is not the case, he simply tolerates her.)


Ril:
  • Protective. (determined to protect her by any means necessary. He tries to protect Ril in small ways as well as large, for example teaching her warrior's meditation techniques to help her control the voices in her mind.)
  • Devoted. Eventually his protectiveness of her becomes something deeper, but he doesn't dare think about it.


Fox:
  • Indifferent (on the surface appears to feel the same about Fox as he does about Rori and everyone else.)
  • Utter hatred. (in actuality, Proteus knew Fox in his previous life, and considers him a traitor. In Proteus' eyes, Fox rejected his purpose and fled.)
  • Determined (He doesn't plan to let Fox out of his sight now that he knows where he is.)


Sig:
  • Annoyed (Proteus could almost respect Sig's abilities as a fighter, if Sig weren't such a d**k so much of the time.)


Ciara:
  • Indifferent.
Name: Sig (means eagle)
Song: It's My Turn To Fly – The Urge
Associated Imagery: Eagles, wings

Age: 18
Hair: curly, blond
Height: 5' 8"
Build: lean

Clothes/ Style: As a guard he wears a leather breast plate and bracers on duty. Off duty Sig likes to impress the ladies with clothes that are understated but hot. His favorite color is green. Also, Sig loves his sword and wears it at all times, even off duty.

Occupation: Guard

Personality: Skirt chaser. Sig has a lot of confidence, some would say arrogance. He feels a strong drive to protect others, especially women, and this sometimes comes off as chauvinism.

Sig is the youngest of the group. He hero worshipped his father when he was young, but then his dad died when Sig was about 8. Sig became the man of the house, and took his position as protector and helper of his mother seriously. Needless to say when she remarried a couple of years later, Sig and his step-father didn't exactly get along, and frequently locked horns. The only good thing to come out of the marriage in Sig's point of view was his two little sisters. When his mother died last year, the animosity between Sig and his step-father escalated. Without his mother to smooth things over between them, tensions crescendo-ed into outright hostility until finally, Sig left home. He misses his little sisters, but not the grief of living with his stepfather. Athletic and good with a sword, he found work one duchy over as a minor guard to the duke's manor.

Sig's prize possession is his sword, which has a spell on it which allows it to grow and reshape by the will of the wielder (within limits. It only has so much mass to work with). He loves his sword like some men love cars. He polishes it every night, though the spell on it means he doesn't need to, and he would probably sing it to sleep if he thought it would make it happy.

Sig is fiercely loyal, and once he has given you his loyalty, you will never shake him off. Friendly and gregarious. Playful.


Reference images:


Quote:

Relationships with other characters

Rori:
  • Lust (he hits on her as he does every female character)
  • Wary (he's noticed her aloofness/ ice princess behavior, and he's not about to push things with her)


Ril:
  • Care (she reminds him of his little sisters and he wants to protect her)


Proteus:
  • Respects him as a fighter but wishes he would grow a sense of humor.


Fox:
  • Likes him. Fox is the right mix of responsible and friendly to not only groove with Sig, but also help reign him in.
  • Respect. Of everyone in the group, Sig probably respects Fox's opinion the most.


Ciara:
  • Lust (he hits on her as he does everything with tits)
  • Hostility (he and Ciara are like fire and water, constantly bickering.) He thinks she is too uptight, and she doesn't like his sword! How can she not like his SWORD?
  • Attraction (underneath all the bickering, Sig is actually deeply attracted to Ciara, though he would die before admitting so.)

Name: Ciara (means fiery)
Song: Marta's Dance & The Russian Dervish - Bill Whelan
Associated Imagery: flames

Age: early 20's
Hair: long and red, usually worn pulled back from her face.
Height: 5' 8"
Build: lithe (think dancer)

Clothes/ Style: Ciara wears the traditional clothes of her people, which includes long skirts, peasant-style blouses, ornately embroidered tunics, and heeled boots. She particularly likes blues and reds. Ciara also has a pair of fans that she uses to dance (and occasionally fight) with.

Occupation: Nomad and dancer

Personality: Ciara is a member of a nomadic people that denounce magic as an unnatural perversion of nature. Her people are not well-treated by the rest of the population and Ciara herself bears a strong grudge against “normal” people. Ciara in fact crosses paths with the group while on a quest for vengeance that goes wrong. She helps the rest of the group get out of town fast after their failed mission and find refuge temporarily with her people. Unfortunately, Ciara's use of magical items (her fans) while on her quest for revenge and her choice to pursue violence cause her to be banished from her people.

Despite her fiery temper and hatred of mainstream culture and people, Ciara is actually quite level-headed and she tends to be the voice of reason among the group.


Reference images:
  • Reference sheet
  • Various refs - Ciara has a very distinctive nose, so I added several refs from different angles and in different lighting situations (as best I could). If you need more, basically google Amy Winehouse. She has Ciara's nose.

    The folder also contains several examples of costume inspiration. The colors may or may not be accurate, but it should give at least some ideas about style, cut, decoration, etc.


Quote:

Relationships with other characters

Rori:
  • Friendship. Despite Rori’s iciness with others, and the fact that she is a stitch, Ciara and Rori hit it off from the start.


Ril:
  • Concern. Like everyone else in the group, Ciara is fond of Ril and worries about her.


Proteus:
  • Neutral. By the time Ciara joins the group, Proteus is already an established member, and she has no reason to either like or dislike him.


Sig:
  • Anger. Ciara thinks Sig is sexist, arrogant, and irresponsible and is frequently provoked by his behavior.
  • Disdain. Ciara sees Sig’s reliance on and love of his sword as symptomatic of everything that is wrong with a magic-dependant mainstream culture.
  • Attraction (despite all their fighting, Ciara is actually deeply attracted to Sig, though she would die before admitting so.)


Fox:
  • Friendly. Despite the fact that he is a stitch, Ciara appreciates Fox’s affability and helpfulness. He makes her feel like one of the group in spite of her cultural differences.

(possible minor character post)
Technology
    Technology in the world of SeM is pre-industrial (few to no machines or advanced technologies) with a couple magical exceptions. For example, they do have instantaneous communication through magic mirrors which allow them to see and talk to other people from a great distance. Because something like a horseless carriage would require not just one spell, but a weave of them, and because a weave of spells have to have an anchor, and a consistent energy source, not much in the way of mass or rapid transportation have been developed. People mostly travel by foot or by horse/cart/carriage wherever they need to go.

    Medicine is also severely under-developed for a number of reasons. Medical technology in SeM is at a level roughly equivalent to renaissance era medicine in our world.

    Some technology is fairly common even in poorer households. Most families have one of a variety of spells to keep their home light, and at least a little warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. Most have a cold box for storing foods, and a hot box for cooking them. Household spells have to be designed very carefully so that they don't interfere with each other. They also have to have a consistent energy source, and something to anchor them in place. For this reason Many households have a tree planted in the center of the house. This is called the core. The living energy of the tree can be harnessed for the spells, and it also serves as a common point to tie them to.



Clothing
    There are no artificial fabrics in the world of SeM. Clothing is made from homespun wool, cotton, flax, hemp, silk, leather, or other natural materials. Without machines to make tiny stitches, seams should be visible (see guide sheets). Also, any fitted clothing is going to have to be attached somehow, whether by buttons, laces, frogs, or something else.



Politics
    The world of SeM is made up of several small duchies (dukedoms) each lead by it's own duke. The dukes squabble a lot over land, as well as timber, mining, and water rights, etc. They stop short of outright war with each other, but the bitterness of the squabbling means that it can be difficult to travel from one duchy to the next. Most people don't bother. Stitches and weavers are exceptions to this. They are welcome wherever they go, and borders don't mean much to them.



Simulacra
    There are legends that once, some weavers were brilliant enough that they found a way to weave not just spells, but actual weaves together in harmony, and that they used this impossible skill to weave a living creature. The creatures were called simulacra. They looked human, but were stronger and had a natural affinity for/understanding of magic. Two kingdoms went to war, and each side had an army of simulacra built. Hundreds of thousands died. The kingdoms realized their mistake but too late, the simulacra had already begun to rebel against their creators. Eventually the simulacra were destroyed, but the two kingdoms were destroyed along with them, breaking up into the current duchies, and the knowledge of how to make simulacra was lost. Simulacra feature in many children's stories and folklore in the world of SeM. They are always portrayed as evil, soulless, and inherently destructive in nature.

~Story~



    Chapter 1 Summary

      Rori is a particularly skilled but standoffish stitch. The other stitches at the spool house resent her coldness and have dubbed her “Ice Princess.” Rori doesn’t care. She is the best stitch and she knows it, and people can think what they want, she doesn’t need anyone else. The others believe Fox, a newly arrived stitch, could best her and they propose a competition. Fox is easy going about it and accepts for the fun of it. Rori is reluctant, but goaded into it. Fox wins by a narrow margin, despite the fact that both Rori’s diagnostic skill and magical prowess are better because he is so much faster. Rori can’t believe she lost.

      The lead calls them both over to take a job. Rori tries to insist on going alone, that she doesn’t need a partner, let alone him, but it is a two person job and the lead stands firm. Fox’s attempts at conversation are thwarted as Rori gives him the cold shoulder. They arrive at the job site, a public market, discuss the problem with the client, and split to opposite ends of the market to set up a fix. While Rori is working, she runs into a young baker’s apprentice who recognizes her and calls her “Aspirant Dume”. Meanwhile Fox finishes his part of the setup first, and crosses the market to where Rori is doing hers, unintentionally eavesdropping on the conversation.

      Rori is shaken at being recognized and that night, she packs her things to sneak out of the hub. Fox is waiting for her in the main room though, and tries to convince her to stay in the safety of the hub. When she refuses he insists on going with her. Even more suspicious of him than she was before, Rori points out there’s no reason she should let him follow her. Fox, in turn, points out that she is in danger. When she scoffs he admits to having heard part of her earlier conversation. Rori is furious, but his next words stop her cold. The baker’s apprentice was found dead an hour ago.




    Chapter 2 Highlights


    • Fox still following Rori

    • Rori tries to lose him by sneaking off while he is asleep and walking all through the night.

    • While on a job in the next town Rori is attacked by assassins

    • Fox catches up in time to help her fight them off.

    • During the fight, one of the assassins is injured, and instead of bleeding blood, bleeds leaves

    • because of this, Rori realizes the assassins are not human, but Simulacra.

    • Fox and Rori defeat the simulacra and the simulacra dissolve into tree branches, leaves, and rocks etc. (the elements they were made from).

    • Amongst the simulacras' leafy corpses, Rori finds a lotus flower, the magical "signature of her mentor, who is dead.




    Chapter 3 summary

      After the events of the last chapter, Rori grudgingly accepts Fox as a traveling companion. Though she still keeps a close eye on him, she has to admit if he had wanted her dead, she would already be dead.

      Both are shaken by the revelation of the existence of simulacra, and even more so that they attacked Rori.

      In order to distract herself, Rori asks Fox about his past. He tells her how he was found in the desert with no memory of how he got there, let alone anything before that. He had a pendant with writing on it, but it was all scratched up and the only word he could make out was "Fox" so he took it as his name. The old stitch who found him took him in and taught him his trade. The old stitch's eyesight was beginning to fail, so Fox helped him to do his job, until he passed away.

      Rori asks him about finding out who he really is. He says that he and the old stitch had checked the missing persons accounts all around the area, but there were none that matched him. If anybody out there knew him, they didn't care enough to look for him. Fox doesn't mind though, he is happy with the life he has now.

      He asks Rori about her past, and though she doesn't want to share, she realizes after the events of the last chapter, it's necessary.

      Rori explains that she was an apprentice to a great weaver. This weaver was particularly brilliant, and though it was supposed to be impossible, he was determined to create simulacra. With funding from one of the dukes, Rori and her mentor had researched and tested for months.

      Her mentor had a deep sense of how threads and weaves combined and interacted. They progressed quickly and months later, after several failed attempts, her mentor had succeeded in creating a simulacra. He named the simulacra Alexander, and for a time they were elated, but problems soon arose. Alexander was unbalanced. Frequently depressed and given to mood swings. Rori's mentor tried every way he could think of to tweak the spells that made him, but nothing worked. Finally, Alexander committed suicide, creating an explosion that killed not only himself, but Rori's mentor as well, and destroyed 2/3rds of the duke's manor.

      Rori had been visiting family at the time, so she was spared. She feared the vengeance of the duke, so she went underground, altered her name, and became a stitch. After so long, she thought perhaps the duke wasn't seeking revenge after all, but now she is certain he must be behind the attacks somehow. The baker boy that was killed was one of the few people who had actually seen the simulacra. Rori's mentor had let him help out occasionally when they still worked for the duke, and now she suspects the duke is destroying anyone who had anything to do with the project.

      This still doesn't explain how the two assassins were made or why the assassins contained her mentor's signature.




    Chapter 4 summary

      The lotus flowers used in the simulcra are a rare species developed and only grown at a university research facility, so Rori and Fox decide to head there to see what they can find out.

      On the way, Rori tells Fox about some of the projects the university is famous for. One of the projects mentioned is a young girl who can read minds. Fox is horrified when he hears of a child being experimented on, and insists they rescue the girl when they get to town. Rori, though uncomfortable with the idea also, rejects the rescue plan, pointing out that it is none of their business, the girl isn't being tortured, and that she and Fox are already on the run themselves. Not only would a little girl slow them down, it would put her in more danger as well. Fox is not convinced, but they let the subject drop.

      As they come into town, Fox is accosted by a large man who calls him “traitor” and tries to attack him. Fox narrowly dodges the attack, asking the man who on earth he is. Seeing Fox's genuine confusion, the man stops fighting. Fox asks the man (who gives his name as Proteus) if he knows him, and hesitantly explains about his memory loss. After a moment of talking, the man says that he had thought Fox was someone else. When asked who, he replies “My brother.” Fox wonders if he is sure, but Proteus brushes him off, saying his brother had only left a year ago. He stiffly apologizes for the attack and takes his leave.

      Fox and Rori make their way to the university and go on a public tour of the facility, but all they learn is that the university is still the only place the flowers are grown, and they are shipped too many places. Rori tries to find out specifics of where they are shipped to, but the researcher guiding the tour says that is confidential information and asks them to leave.

      Discouraged, Rori talks with Fox about their options, and they decide to break in to the facility thinking perhaps they could find out more about where the flowers go if they search the office of the head researcher. Rori is nervous about this as it will require a lot of spells and could be very dangerous. Fox assures her that together, the two of them can certainly do it.

      That night they manage the break in and make their way to the office of the head researcher. After some searching they find a ledger that seems to contain a list of shipments over the last two months. They don't know when the simulacra were made, so this may or may not be helpful, but working under the assumption that her mentor is continuing to make them, they begin to copy down the destinations listed on the ledger. They are interrupted by the head researcher returning to his office. In the scuffle that ensues, the head researcher is cut on the corner of his desk, but instead of blood, leaves bleed from the gash. The researcher is another simulacra. They tie him up, and Rori examines the threads and weaves that make it, discovering that it is connected to a network (called a lace). Rori severs the connection to the lace, and the simulacra falls completely inert.

      They are hurrying away from the lab when Fox insists that he is going to rescue the little mind reader. Exasperated and alarmed, Rori tries to talk him out of it, but it's no use, Fox heads off in the direction of the branch of facility where she is kept and Rori follows. Together they weave some spells to help counteract security, but they are temporary measures. When they arrive at the lab, they find no researchers, but the child is being guarded by Proteus who blocks their way. Fox tries to talk to him, but Proteus insists that his purpose is to protect the girl, and he will never go against his purpose. After failing to persuade him with any other argument, Fox points out that if his purpose is to “protect” the little girl, getting her out of a situation where she is being experimented on is protecting her much more than simply guarding her in a lab. Proteus considers this, sheathes his sword, lifts the girl from her bed, and follows them from the facility.

(reserved just in case)
User Image

      Songs we associate with our stories and characters - give them a listen here.

      1. No Escape – Rori [Fall Away - The Fray]
      Rori's past refuses to stay there.

      2. Scratching Its Way Out – Rori [Little House - The Fray]
      And it just might kill her.

      3. The Optimist – Fox [Umbrella - No More Kings]
      Fox isn't blind to all the bad things that happen, he just chooses to keep moving in spite of them.

      4. Voices – Ril [Haunted - Poe]
      “I'm haunted
      By the lives that wove the web
      Inside my haunted head”

      5. Nomad's Dance – Ciara [Marta's Dance & The Russian Dervish - Bill Whelan]
      Ciara is an excellent dancer (in the traditional sense).

      6. Proving Ground – Sig [It's My Turn To Fly – The Urge]
      Sig has a powerful sense of loyalty and drive to prove himself.

      7. Secrets – Entire Group [Something To Hide - No More Kings]
      Everyone in the group has a past they'd rather not talk aboutm and Fox's past is secret even to him!

      8. Reluctantly – Rori [Falling - Keri Noble]
      As the journey continues and the group digs deeper into the conspiracy they've discovered, Rori begins to realize she is falling for Fox.

      9. I Hear Violins – Ril to Proteus [Center of the Sun – Poe]
      “She sings: You say the most beautiful things, just like my violins.”

      10. No Way To Reach Me – Proteus [Vienna - The Fray]
      Proteus must choose between his purpose as a protector, and his true, secret purpose.

      Everything after 10 contains spoilers, so I am not including descriptions. I'll leave the titles characters though in case anyone wants to use them for the predictions prize.

      11. Puppet Master – Alexander [Silo Lullaby - Toad The Wet Sprocket]

      12. Endings – Fox to Rori [The Next Life - London Suede]

      13. God Of Stone – Proteus to Ril [Feather Moon - Vienna Teng]

      14. Aftermath – Entire Group [Back To Good - Matchbox Twenty]

      15. Ghost of You – Rori to Fox [Canonball - Vienna Teng]

      16. A Boy And A Girl And The End Of The World – Proteus and Ril [Adam and Eve - October Project]

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