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by on March 31, 2021
A Familiar was a tool. A thing created by greater magii and scientists alike to assist with research, casting, and various other mundane tasks. Aerian Grimoire created hers in the form of a tome for this exact reason. What better thing to keep research notes in order than a research journal, after all? It practically wrote itself! Well. It literally wrote itself. Aerian would mumble to herself under her breath, as the words she spoke appeared on the page beside her. Her brow was knit in concentration as she focused down and hammered out these last bits of-
'Query: Is this form of magic rooted in Necromancy?'
Aerian growled and turned to face the tome, scowling quietly, "Of course it's not rooted in necromancy. Why would you think- As if you could think- Why do you even ask?"
'Response: The summoning of souls is oft the prospect of a necromancer and their ilk.'
The unicorn shook her head, and placed her hooves to her temples, "I'm not summoning a soul. I'm conjuring one. It never existed in the first place."
A brief pause, before the book spoke again, 'Query: With what reason does Lady Grimoire seek to conjure a soul?'
The unicorn would grumble and close the five other books in front of her, each one heavier than the last, "You don't need to know."
'Response: It is important to catalogue every step of the process of spell creation.'
Aerian stood up and lifted her glasses from her face. She wiped at them idly, as she pondered the statement. It would be important. Maybe. For future scholars. she began to pace around the personal study she'd set up in, picking up a candle in her telekinetic grip, using it to light a few torches around the room. When did it get so dark on her? How long had she been in here?
'Query: Why does Lady Grimoire need so much time to deliberate a simple question?'
A louder groan, "It's.... It's like working backwards. The soul is the hard part. The body is the easy part. Once you know the solution- once we know how to make this? Everything else will fall into place."
'Memory: Lady Grimoire seeks to create a body for medical reasons, correct?'
"Of COURSE, that's why I want to do this, Tome. Imagine. Unicorn surgeons, despite all their magics, cannot magically set a bone. They can't create the scar tissue that'll heal a wound. They can't.... do anything special. But we can change that. If we get this right- we won't just be able to set bone and cure wounds that would otherwise take weeks to heal. We could.... create new limbs! We could help those that can't walk.... walk! We could revolutionize the way medicine is viewed!"
'Data collection: complete.'
"You're damn right it is, Tome. Come on. The books are straining my eyes. Let's test again."
'Running test: 72A'
Eri would nod and step out of the stuffy, cramped quarters of the study. She traipsed empty halls with her tome beside her. Darkness abound. On one side, a wall was made out of glass, overlooking a courtyard. Completely barren. Everyone had left, already. She was the only one here. Made it easier on her to test again. The Tome would accept her statements about conjuration but... she couldn't make promises about any other researchers.
As she walked, she'd open up a set of double doors into a lab area, already cleared out in the center for more large scale projects. Aerian would close her eyes for a moment, before stepping in, and kicking the door shut behind her. The tome flitted up in front of her, opening up to the most recent pages. Aerian would speak, reciting words from the page. Each word she spoke caused a light to flicker off the paper. Runes began to glow on the ground.
A smirk crossed her lips. Familiars were very handy tools. She was glad that she was able to create one.Without this thing.... her studies wouldn't be turning out near as fast. She continued to read. More teal lights flickered out on the ground, spelling out ancient words. Phrases that were long dead to any and all. All but her.
Slowly, these words began to form together. A statement. A passage. And, from between these words- between these lines- something began to emerge. It looked... simple. Small. A mote of quivering essence. A white hot looking center, with those familiar teal accents filtering off it. If she didn't know better... she'd have just assumed she'd summoned a will-o-wisp. But she knew better.
"Catena!" She'd call out loudly, slamming her book shut. Spectral chains would whip out from nowhere, wrapping around this spirit. Until it was held in place completely.
"Tome! Write it down. We've... we've done it. Experiment 72A was a complete success!"
Words began to appear on the pages of the book. What a handy, lovely, tool. If only it didn't talk so much.
The sound of shattering steel rung through the room. These phantom chains all snapped as one. And this.... spirit. This soul, rushed out towards her. It pierced it's way through Aerian's chest, dragging a gasp from her. And she felt cold. Her legs didn't respond. She couldn't call for help. She couldn't call for her Tome. She had no idea how long she was down for. It felt like hours, locked in her own mind. Locked in sheer terror that.... she was dead. That she'd never be able to help those that she promised.
Her frozen limbs, though, slowly came back to her. She could soon stand, leaning heavily upon a lab desk. She could only look up for a moment, as she saw this soul start to disappear. Detach itself from this reality. Magic... couldn't contain something like that. The pure will to live. It was almost beautiful. Was... was that a tear streaming down her face? She wiped it away, and let out a shaky sigh.
She looked down to her frie- No. It wasn't a friend. What was she thinking? A Familiar was a tool. A thoughtless creature that did it's masters bidding. It didn't think. It had no sense of anything, other than to obey!
'Query.... What did you... do to me?'