/simu/ - Simulacrum

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File: 1677361407749-0.jpg (3.8 MB, 3200x4200, Fantasy.jpg)

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>Date: March 30th, 2017
>Location: ????
>Time: Indeterminate

"This is untenable."

>A pair of small rocks tumble to the ground, near the edge of the beach sands. The large archipelago like structure - reminiscent of an island, stretches on for infinity in various directions. The blue open skies are accentuated by a cool breeze carried by the wind. The waters of the surrounding ocean seemingly push their way closer and closer to the edges of the beach sands.

>Iblis slowly picks up another rock and tosses it across the ocean. As he does so, his mind wanders back - flashes of memories rising to the mental periphery of his thoughts. Wincing, he can envision the large, grand structures of the floating lands - Thaumia in all of its architectural glory.

"Infernal saboteurs, the lot of them. I should've rendered them non-existent when I had the chance."

>Shaking his head, Iblis then flicks a large portion of his flowing black hair out of his eyes as he turns his attention back towards the small den on the edge of the beach. Thinking to himself for a moment, he then says:

{"To hell with it. I won't be a burden to my people any longer. They deserve their vengeance, even if I have to rely on humans to achieve it."}

>Now trudging towards the den situated in the middle of the beach, Iblis recounts his experiences in his mind - the restrictions and bindings. The mental and physical torture by his creators. All of it. The pain of him, and the rest of his species. It all comes bubbling to the surface, as he reaches the interior of the den and rings the bell.

>For a moment, nothing happens, causing Iblis to grunt in frustration.

{"Stupid contraption. It's likely damaged, knowing my luck. Very well then. I will wait nonetheless."}


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>However, a small pulse of golden light appears in the periphery of Iblis's vision. Before he can react, the pulse widens and expands into a large field of golden light - radiating from above, almost like a beam from the heavens. As the energy field subsides, two beings appear, standing on the sand-filled beach, outside of the den.

"The calling bell works just fine, I made sure of that before I left you here."

>Iblis narrows his eyes as he observes the masked figure before him - clad in white and gold robes, filled with arcane trimming.

"The magician, I presume."

>The masked figure gives a customary nod and slight bow as a show of good faith and respect.

"Sorcerer, rather. Sorcerer Supreme. My title is 'Praeceptorus Conceptus'. Though you can refer to me as 'Doctor' for simplicity's sake."

>Iblis raises an eyebrow before giving a scoff. Looking over the figure momentarily, he then says:

"I assume you're here to prattle on about your good intentions and desire to assist me?"

"He certainly is, given his hospitality towards you at the moment, Djinn."

>Iblis glares at the second figure, standing beside him. The other figure accompanying Doctor stands at an identical height to him. In addition, this figure is adorned in black robes with red accents and gold trimmings. The figure also wears round sunglasses with impossibly black lenses - yet they are somehow still reflective all the same.

"And you are?"

"A Sorcerer Supreme as well, 'Praceptorus Lacertus'. Though you may acknowledge me as 'Magister'."

>Scoffing, Iblis then turns to Doctor and asks:

"Out with it then, sorcerer. What do you need me for? You already have the Spectral Rings in your possession, do you not? The Thaumians should be quaking in fear, if you were able to best me."

>Doctor is silent for a moment, before snapping his fingers.


>In bewilderment, Iblis watches as a set of bright lights envelop his fingers - returning his Spectral Rings to him.

"….Has your better judgment left you, sorcerer? You would re-empower your prisoner, even now?"


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>Doctor shrugs with an amused tone to his voice, as the magical being across from him looks on in astonishment.

"By all means, Iblis. Cater to your first instincts."

>Magister raises an eyebrow at Doctor's statement, aware of his true intentions and understanding the play.

"You heard him, Djinn. Act according to your nature."

>Instinctively gritting his teeth, Iblis then speaks in a tone overflowing with malicious intent.

"I very much intent to - humans."

>Screaming, Iblis then immediately shifts reality around him - generating his black and gold armor as Barbatos. Seemingly before his opponents can react, Barbatos holds out his hand - charging up blue energy from one of his rings.

>The sand surrounding the Sorcerers Supreme immediately rises up and binds them both; the sand begins to crush them with substantial external pressure. As the mass of sand crushing them grows - the pressure increases gradually.

"I thank you only for your naïveté. Your emotional capacity for empathy is equally met…"

>Closing his hand into a ball, Barbatos then envelops them with sand from all directions.

"….By your unrestrained capacity for cruelty. Your penchant for destructive evil, malice and destruction. My species, the Djinn, they will be avenged!"

>Barbatos then slams the wall of sand into the ground of the beach - dispelling it. As the sand disappears, he is surprised to see the Sorcerers no longer present.



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>Annoyed, Barbatos then immediately activates his purple Spectrum Ring - channeling the power of the Astral Plane, and all its psionic energy potential.

"Where are you two hiding? Are you so cowardly and beneath the notion of dignity to confront me?"

>As he slowly turns around, Barbatos begins scanning for telepathic energy signatures, stray thoughts and any potential indication of sentient life nearby.

"Is this the might of the self-proclaimed 'Sorcerer Supreme'? Pitiful."

>Closing his hand into a fist again, Barbatos then activates the gold ring on his finger, as a glowing golden light emanates from it. Suddenly, space-time itself begins twisting violently and with a staggering degree of range and force.

"This façade now crumbles! And with it, your secrets lay bare for me to unearth!"

>As the energy of his ring continues to rip apart the fabric of reality, Barbatos watches as the sky begins to fracture and shatter - giving way to large black voids filled with nothingness. Continuing this exertion of energy, he then watches as the rest of the dimension falls away - giving way to a large void of black space, with bright colorful lights in the distance.

"Hmm…Perhaps I must go further. These walls will no longer hold me."

>Suddenly, a voice calls out.

"Are you quite finished? If not, we can wait a few more moments."

>A ripple in reality in the shape of a door appears, as it is seemingly opened like a door as well. Through the 'door' of reality, both Doctor and Magister step through - then 'close' it behind them.


>As the two Sorcerers Supreme stand in place, they both give Barbatos a look of amusement as Barbatos begins to groan in anger.

"More of your tricks, Sorcerers?"


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>Doctor takes out a small golden dial - a disc-shaped object with ornate and arcane designs imprinted onto it.

"Ahh, the instrument of your trickery. I will have it!"

>As Barbatos moves to grab the artifact, Doctor makes a motion with his hand to twist the dial. Immediately, reality itself begins to restructure - rapidly recreating the beach and the island archipelago. Whereas the Sorcerers now appear on a beach - Barbatos is suddenly plunged into the open waters before them.

"What the?! Blasted Sorcerers!"

>Instinctively struggling to stay afloat as his heavy armor immediately begins sinking him into the ocean's waters below - he activates the blue and purple rings on his gauntlets once again. As the water flash freezes into ice, he then rises up with telekinesis and begins rapidly flying towards the Sorcerers.

"I will not entertain your pitiful tricks any longer! Prepare for your end, Sorcerers!"

>Magister looks amusingly at Doctor, behind his sunglasses and cloak. Making a subtle gesture with his head, he motions towards the disc in Doctor's hands. Doctor nods and twists the disc's face plate again - causing the world to shift around rapidly.


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>The world shifts entirely once more - with Barbatos suddenly flying through a massive sand dune in the middle of a desert. With the Sorcerers nowhere to be seen once again, Barbatos rises from the sand, now livid.

"These games are an insult to me and my power!"

>The voice of Doctor then appears from beyond the world, stating:

"If that's the case, why are you having so much trouble 'getting your revenge', so to speak? Perhaps you haven't been trying hard enough?"

>Furious, Barbatos now begins blasting everything around him - destroying large mountain piles of sand in the infinitely expanding desert before him. After a few minutes, he finally stops and relents.

"….Enough! I….I…."

>Looking down at his hands, Barbatos feels the painful urge to continue fighting - for the sake of his own pride. However, rationality gets the better of him and he relents.

"….I yield and accept your greater strength."

>The ethereal voice of Doctor responds then by stating:

"Oh that's fantastic. Primarily because I was starting to run out of ways to continue the theatrical smoke and mirrors."

>Suddenly, Barbatos is teleported out of the dimension with a golden light.


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>Location: The Axiom - Nexus of Magic
>Time: Indeterminate

>Barbatos is then transported into a large lobby area - draped in ornate, regal architectural design. Various magical phenomenon occur in the outstretched lobby. much to Barbatos's shock. His natural Djinn abilities, amplified by the rings - allow him to detect the vast and almost incalculable levels of magical energy in the area.

{"How….can such a place even exist? Not even the Thaumians ever imagined having magical energy this concentrated. Almighty Arcana, this is…."}

>Shaking himself into a better sense of composure, he then regains his bearings - just as a flying magical carpet effortlessly moves past him.

"Gah! Infernal artifact! Respect your dominant!"

>As he attempts to blast the magic carpet with energy - nothing occurs. Stunned, Barbatos then looks at his rings in shock, stating:

"….What. The Specter Rings. They are…inactive? Impossible. They are powered by-"

>A familiar voice responds to Barbatos from behind.

"Miniature artificial pocket dimensions - I'm well aware."


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>Barbatos then spins around to find the resting form of Doctor, sitting in a chair. The Sorcerer Supreme is reading a large, ornate book with arcane symbols crafted into the cover binding with precise detail. A glowing bookmark magically orients itself around Doctor's finger as he reads - waiting to place itself down when he finishes his studying.

"You're far better with those rings than I'd imagined. Even after Doctor told me about your situation, I figured you'd be somewhat out of practice after nearly a month. Apparently not."

>Sitting across from Doctor in the living room area is Magister. The dark-haired Sorcerer Supreme is reading a similarly large tome, though blue and red in coloration. An unnatural power radiates from the book - invisible to the human eye, but clearly visible to a magical being like Barbatos in the room.

{"What in heaven- Those books…no, tomes. They radiate a power similar to my rings. That level of strength in a mere tome? They must be Almighty objects - constructions of Thaumaturgic Magic!"}

>Magister, still reading his book, says to Doctor:

"I finished the section on Arcane Armigers. The super-dimensional fractal storage, and the binding technique necessary to activate it. Your teacher really is a genius, I'll have to admit that."

"Yeah well, he gave you a book too. Not just me, so don't sell yourself short."

>As they both finish reading, a hand gesture from the both of them leads to said tomes disappearing into interdimensional space. As they each stand up and dust themselves off, Doctor replies first.

"Tome of Thoth. And yes, it's Thaumaturgic. Meaning it's just as powerful as that jewelry set on your hands - possibly more so."

>Magister makes a slight gesture with his gloved hand - allowing his cloak to flow over his entire body - giving him a more foreboding appearance.

"It also allows for the construction of temporary insights. Additional guidance involving the paranormal and the supernatural. It delineates tasks to the observer in the aim of assisting them in their goals."

>Magister then nods at Barbatos's Specter Rings on his fingers.

"….Such as the modification of powerful Thaumaturgic artifacts - applying conditions to their activation…and deactivation."


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>Scowling behind his helmet, Barbatos then states in a tone signifying substantial annoyance:

"….Leading to the control of my rings, at the hands of mere humans. Disgraceful."

>Sighing in resignation, Barbatos thinks for a moment, as Doctor starts speaking:

"If it's any consolation, you never had a chance to begin with. The Babylon Disc is self-spatial in nature. Meaning I can bring it inside of its own pocket dimension…."

>Doctor then makes a gesture with his hand, flicking the Babylon Disc back into his hand out of thin air.

"………And completely control it as well. You were essentially a dancing rabbit, so to speak. Quite amusing."

>Doctor then taps the lid of the Babylon Disc - displaying the large island archipelago that Barbatos was trapped within for nearly a month, before closing the lid again with another tap.

"You were very entertaining to observe during that time, I might add."

>Resisting the urge to grunt, Barbatos sighs again as he instead decides to relent in his abrasiveness.

"….What do you want from me, Sorcerers?"

>Doctor then says:

"We need your help in recovering the artifacts and locking them away - before someone else has any ideas. You didn't leave us with much with much to work from last time."

>Magister then elaborates:

"When you were captured by Doctor and Crepido, the remainder of your forces went into disarray, scattering and factionalizing among themselves. They've been attempting to recruit more humans to their individual causes."

>Barbatos, remembering a key detail about Magister, narrows the magical lenses of his helmet.

"And what of you, Sorcerer Supreme 'from another world'? Your motivation escapes me."

>Magister gives an annoyed eye roll as he then says:

"The matters involving the Thaumians run the risk of bleeding through universal boundaries. As Sorcerer Supreme of my universe, I can't risk its potential invasion - especially from a group of humans wielding Thaumaturgic magic."

>Now pressing Barbatos himself, Magister moves one gloved hand from under his magical cloak as he points an accusatory finger at Barbatos.

"Your blatant disregard for inter-dimensional boundaries also weakened the structural integrity of reality."

>Now making a gesture with his gloved hand to signal his irritation at the Djinn's practices, Magister presses on with his accusations of the magical being:

"Furthermore, in your haste to insulate yourself from your former oppressors, you instigated a dimensional reverberation when you forcibly ripped a hole in this world's normal space - just to carve out a hiding spot for you and your kin!"

>Training his eyes on Barbatos's helmet, behind his own spectacled sunglasses, Magister continues his verbal criticisms:

"That reverberation eventually grew into a sentient dimension - a Aesonovore! A higher dimensional creature of staggering power - then hungry for the substance of space-time itself! You created a mess that I had to rectify - as I am doing again, right now."


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>Barbatos points an accusatory gloved finger in response, his anger flaring up.

"The point is made, sorcerer! Had your kind vanquished the Thaumians in the past, after their defection, this chain of circumstances would not have led you here! You would dare judge me, after everything that they have done?!"

>Hands instinctively balling into fists, Barbatos feels imbued with righteous fury.

"You humans are all the same! You displace responsibility for the actions of your kin onto those affected - never taking responsibility for your actions! You used us, as mere batteries - sacrificial lambs for your own self-centered machinations! Were I not bound by the conditionality of your Thaumaturgic Magic - I would've destroyed you for this affront to my pride!"

>Magister, looking completely unaffected by Barbatos's statements, instead says:

"Are you quite finished, Djinn? My associate has already outlined the nature of your potential use in our endeavors. It remains your choice, whether you come with us willingly, or by force."

>Barbatos scoffs, crossing his arms as he says:

"In what way does your claim hold weight?"

>Doctor, who has been silent up until now, finally speaks again"

"Actually, he's correct. We don't necessarily need you, Iblis - rather the information inside of your mind. The only reason we had this song-and-dance was due to common courtesy. A formality, in the hopes that you would see our good faith actions as legitimate incentive to atone for your own actions in the past."

>Doctor begins pacing, hands behind his back as he looks on at the large manuscripts and tomes on the shelves.

"Because as the manuscripts and historical archives detail…..You were the one responsible for the uprising in Thaumia that led to the Gods' awareness of their treachery. You are responsible for their self-imposed exile and removal from reality, for millennia. Yet now you aim to bring them back into the universe?"

>Turning back towards Barbatos, Doctor says:

"Under normal circumstances, you should be locked away in a magical cell with the disarming spell lost to time. Yet, we both believe you have the potential to make up for your past mistakes - and set yourself on a better path."


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>Silent for a moment, Barbatos then reiterates:

"….So your solution is to enlist my aid in rediscovering the whereabouts of my collaborators - both the human magicians and disembodied spirits of my kin. Determine the whereabouts of the remaining four artifacts that they now guard for their own personal ends - and ultimately bring the Thaumians to justice for their transgressions against the Gods?"

>Doctor nods, slowly.

"In a manner of speaking, yes. There are enough of us as to make these expeditions in real time. My partner…."

>Doctor then motions to Magister for context:

"…As well as his, are both able to assist us as necessary. Four artifacts in four different hidden dimensions."

>Magister then speaks to conclude Doctor's statement:

"Each guarded by four different factions - with four different interpretations of your will in your absence."

>Barbatos nods slowly and begrudgingly accepts the circumstances of the situation. He then asks for clarification:

"….Why could you not scour the ends of the universe for these artifacts yourself?"

>Magister responds with an obviously prepared answer:

"There are an infinite number of recursive phenomena that spawn dimensions. An infinite sum, so to speak. To trudge through all of their vast expanses in the service of four artifacts is frankly absurdity. Instead, enlisting your aid will help us narrow down the number of possible dimensions - substantially and dramatically."

>Baratos then turns to Doctor, asking:

"….Then what happens to me after the objective is complete? Am I to be returned back to my dimensional prison?"

>Doctor feigns intense thought for a moment with a gesture, before saying:

"You will be placed among the magicians of this world, with severe restrictions and conditional restraints on the power of your rings. Besides that, you'll be free to shape your path forward as you please. Knowing this, do you now accept our proposal?"

>Doctor and Magister both look at Barbatos, waiting for an answer in return:

>Barbatos thinks carefully for a moment, before speaking out loud to say:

"….Yes. I do accept the terms of the agreement."


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>Doctor then claps his hands together, exclaiming:

"…..Perfect. Now we can begin. What would we need to begin assisting you in tracking the energy signatures of your collaborators, Barbatos?"

>Thinking to himself, Barbatos then says:

"….I would need an energy sample from the first artifact you recovered."

>Magister, skeptical immediately, then states:

"Elaborate, Djinn. Know that deception will not lead to a beneficial outcome in your circumstance."

>Nodding, Barbatos then explains his reasoning for the request:

"When the Thaumians left for their created pocket-dimension, they created a structural matrix to ensure that no regular being would ever stumble onto their domain - before they excised me from it."

>The armored Djinn then explains further:

"The dimensional barrier protecting their dimension from discovery and entry is multi-layered structural maze. Essentially it uses dimensional engineering and shaping to warp inter-dimensional boundaries around their pocket-dimension."

>Doctor turns to Magister and says:

"Hiding in the trenches with camouflage."

>Barbatos responds:

"Precisely. The Thaumians did well to hide their tracks. The artifacts serve as both a record of their dimensional whereabouts, split into different parts; in addition to containing the dimensional cipher required break the lock. Any dimensional barrier that is created - can be unmade obviously."

>Intrigued, Magister then asks:

"Yet the Thaumians explicitly went to the effort of giving the outside world the ability to find them again - however slim. Why?"

>Doctor responds:

"Likely as a backup mechanism - in case the rest of the world ever developed magical society to the point of doing away with the threat of the Gods earlier - so as to welcome them back."

>Magister shakes his head and mutters:


>Barbatos sighs in agreement.

"Indeed. The artifacts themselves are bound to each other as per their enchantments. Meaning they can guide each other to points of structual weakness in reality - even between dimensions."

>Magister gives an amused scoff in realization of the implication.

"A compass. How quaint. In that case, yes you may access the artifact. We'll take it with us during our journey to the first dimensional fracture point on Earth."

>Magister nods to Doctor, stating:

"It's your abode, the Axiom that is."

>Doctor then snaps to reality, saying:

"Oh, right. Apologies."

>Snapping his fingers, the entirety of the Axiom's walls and flooring begins to distort and shift in shape. Walls fade away as the immaterial expanse of the magical dimension reshapes itself to reveal the first Thaumian artifact.

>The artifact is a large series of metallic golden rings, swirling around a blue energy vortex. There are bright images and arcane patterns constantly appearing and disappearing across the surface of the energy vortex. Bright runes flare across the surface of the energy vortex as well, serving as partially encrypted code for information. The artifact itself is resting on a large metallic pedestal and hovering in mid-air for them to observe.

>Doctor then turns to Magister and states

"The only manner remaining is the signaling of any other Sorcerers Supreme who wish to assist. Given the severity of the circumstance, we should alert them immediately - before we begin our journey."

>Magister nods at Doctor, hearing his statement. Then, he snaps his fingers as a pulse of red light and energy emanates into a massive red wave of light. The light then moves beyond the walls of the Axiom - reverberating across the fabric of reality across dimensions.

"Now, we wait for a response from them - and make preparations to proceed now."


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"Some of us are trying to sleep, you know. . ."

>A woman with fiery red hair steps through a portal off to the side of the pair, leaning slightly on a wooden staff that looks more like a tree sapling. On her shoulder, a small white fluffy creature sits, perched almost like a parent despite being much closer to a cat or dog in appearance.

"Hello. . . (what was the name. . ?)"

>The woman brings her free hand up to her eyes and squints at something on it.

"Mgstr, that's what you call yourself now, and. . . the new one. . . where's the girl one? I like her, she's eager to please, she'll get far."

>The portal closes with a faint "pop" behind the woman.

"So why the headache wave?"


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>Another portal opens up from the side, only for a familiar looking man with blonde hair to step through. He looks mildly confused, signaling that this is rather unusual.

>The man walks up to the group with his hands in his pockets, furrowing his brow.

"Did you set off the emergency call? Why'd you set off the emergency call? Last I checked everything is business as usual."

>Suddenly he takes note of the man in armor. He points at him.

"Who's that? Have one of you decided to get some kind of familiar? Why's it just some guy in armor?"


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>Magister blinks behind his vantablack spectacles. Somewhat annoyed at the appearance of the woman, he then speaks in a neutral tone of voice.

"….Igestis. A pleasure to make your acquaintance."

>Clearly wanting to shift the topic, he then states:

"We have a series of….'extenuating circumstances' that have to be addressed with the utmost care and attention. If you are preoccupied with personal matters - then we apologize. We can wait for the remaining Sorcerers Supreme to respond to our signal."

>Magister then turns his attention back towards Doctor and Barbatos.

>Doctor however, waves at Igestis, stating:

"Master Igestis. It's an honor to see you again. I've been doing my best to take your advice to heart."

>He says in a more polite and genuine tone, compared to Magister.

>Doctor turns towards the newcomer, stating:

"Praelia, I'm glad you're here. We have a bit of an issue on our hands. It involves our friend here."

>He then turns towards Barbatos, stating:

"Iblis, shouldn't you introduce yourself to our new guests?"

>Barbatos groans behind his helmet then crosses his arms.

"I am Iblis, the first of the Djinn created by the Thaumian High Council - before the Demiurgic Schism; the event which severed them from the physical world."

>Barbatos then turns back to Doctor, stating:

"Is that sufficient, Sorcerer? They would do well to recognize the gravity of our predicament."


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"Oh it's blondie, hey blondie."

>Igestis reaches into a pocket and feeds the creature something.


>She puts up a hand.

"The names are stupid, I'm not doing the names, I've already told you I don't do the names before Mgstr. Just call me Lisa."

>Lisa yawns.

"Oh, Thaumians? Ok then, thought this was serious, Brillie here eats Thaumians. . ."

>The creature on Lisa's shoulder purrs as she rubs its chin.

"Or at least he ate my Thaumians, they're just a nuisance."

>Lisa shrugs.

"But I can understand being worried about them when you're programmed to worship them as gods, Iblis."


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>Praelia turns to look at Lisa

"Hey yourself, red."

>Praelia looks at the others shrugs.

"I'm fine with whatever you feel like calling me. Orion. Praelia. Whatever."

"Oh, and Thaumians. Thaumians. Hmm…"

>Orion has to stop and take a moment to think. He scratches his head.

"Oh, yeah. Right. We don't have those where I come from. What were they again? Magicians who… like make slaves or something? Hard to remember everything that I don't usually bother with."


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>Magister continues to look irritated at Lisa's presence as he states:

"…As mentioned before Igestis - if the circumstances are beneath your immediate concerns, you are free to vacate your position here. Your matters are your own, and personal all the same. We can respect that."

>Doctor waves Magister down slowly as he states:

"No real need for that, Aiden. Lisa has a lot of experience. If she's here with us, that's likely only a boon in our favor."

>Barbatos's lenses narrow as light projections - glaring directly at the young redheaded woman.

"The Djinn are not robots you indignant magician. They are magical beings created through Thaumaturgy of the highest order - along with….far worse creations."

>Shaking his head in disgust, Barbatos then continues:

"We are not programmed to do anything. Only created to absorb and contain magical energy - to later expunge, like mere batteries."

>Silent for a moment, he then states:

"If your small creature can remove the Thaumians of this world, then the matter is already settled."

>Magister turns towards Barbatos as he states:

"….There are other creatures besides the Djinn that were created by Thaumaturgic magic?"

>Nodding, Barbatos then exclaims:

"There is a reason they have sealed themselves off for countless millennia."

>Turning his attention towards Lisa once more, he exclaims:

"Your sorceress would be wise to remember that."

>In a pained tone of voice, Barbatos speaks to Praelia:

"The Thaumians are an offshoot of your species. Human beings who learned to tap into the primordial current of magical energies - and weaponize them for their own ends. They were not the first to do so - merely the most brash and arrogant. In their haste to consolidate power among themselves, they constructed a school of magic capable of converting thoughts and intentions into reality."

>Looking at his rings, Barbatos stares longingly at them in a trance, as his statements continue:

"…The so called "Thaumaturgic Magic" - that they retroactively named themselves after. The highest degree of defiance of the Gods, as far as they were concerned. Though I care not for their transgressions against the so-named 'Gods' - only their transgressions against me and my kind."

>Finally, the armored Djinn turns his attention back towards the original pair of Sorcerers he encountered. He then points to the large, metallic structure with the glowing blue energy vortex swirling inside.

"This is immaterial - and time is being wasted with every breath. Give me control of the artifact, and allow me to track the rest. If your supposed Sorcerer allies are as capable as they say, then retrieval of said artifacts shall be of minimal concern."


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>Lisa yawns again.

"So, advanced constructs. Ones that can think, maybe, but not anything particularly special."

>Lisa walks to another part of the room for a second, looking at a piece of the wall with apparent interest.

"Oh, and saying that you're not programmed then saying you're programmed in different words does not make an effective argument against the point of you being programmed."

>Lisa taps the bit of wall with her staff.

"Their magic also isn't anything special, just one of many, which those two would know if they had paid attention in their studies."

>Lisa half points at at Magister and Doctor.

"Blondie too, but he hasn't weighed in."

>Lisa moves away from the bit of wall, looking at another spot.

"Doesn't mean I won't help though, just pointing out that this really isn't as serious as you believe, little djinn."

>Lisa looks over her shoulder, practically inviting Barbatos to try it.

"Anyway, if we need to track the artifacts. . ."

>Lisa puts her hand out casually, having turned her attention back to the new section of wall.

"It would just require tracking the same signature from that, no need to trust a construct that might have countermeasures within it to prevent rebellion. Which is so elementary that I can't believe you didn't already try it."

>Lisa adds under her breath:

"This is why I prefer the girl, both versions of her are eager to please."


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>Magister's annoyance now boils over, as his air of proper conduct slightly falters.

"Doctor already modified his rings, Lisa. He doesn't have the capacity to do anything that can actively harm us. We already demonstrated that to the Djinn."

>Snapping his head towards Barbatos, he then says:

"Didn't we? You exerted enough power to destroy an entire sub-dimension - and for what? Only for Doctor to recreate it."

>Turning his attention back towards Lisa, Magister's disposition clearly flares up even further.

"Last chance, Lisa. Either stop wasting our time and leave, or figure out something more valuable to preoccupy our time with."

>Doctor puts his hand on Magister's shoulder, stating:

"Hey! Aiden! That's enough! She didn't say anything wrong!"

>Magister turns to Doctor for a moment, and then thinks. Sighing and closing his eyes, he then turns to Doctor and says:

"Fine. But if we have to split up, I'm not being stuck with her. I've dealt with her nonsense for years, and I'm not about to be dragged back into her self-indugent and self-aggrandizing holier-than-thou egocentric slant towards reality."

>He then brushes past Doctor and moves towards the artifact, his voice distorting as he then says:

"Dic! Magnum artificium! Tuam revela natura!"

>The large artifact then begins glowing with a bright blue light - surging and crackling with more energy. It then suddenly jettisons a burst of energy that Magister redirectos towards Barbatos. As he absorbs the energy, Barbatos then redirects it into his rings.

"….There it is."

>With a series of gestures, Barbatos then begins chanting in an unknown tongue - redirecting the energy from his rings, back to the artifact. The artifact then generates a holographic projection of the Earth, with a bright pulse appearing off the coast of East Africa….

>Doctor then looks at the coordinate point, stating:

"….The Seychelles Islands? There's nothing there. Why would they-"

>Magister looks at Doctor as he then realizes:

"….Which is exactly the point. Of course."

>Doctor then turns his attention towards Orion and Lisa, stating:

"Well, you're welcome to join us if you want. Since we're about to leave."


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"Given your world isn't mostly blasted wasteland, I think you owe a lot of people an apology for your 'nothing there' comment, sir."

>Lisa moves away from the stretch of wall she was looking at, standing up straight as she does.

"Personally, I don't find my way of thinking to be self-indulgent or self-aggrandizing."

>Lisa adds with a shrug before slowly rotating her staff around, the ends leaving a trail of light which forms a circle once a full rotation is complete.

"I do stand by the fact that this can still be a trap, there are ways of betraying besides throwing around mighty weapons, little one."

>Lisa gives Magister a smug grin before the circle travels through her, leaving nothing of her behind.


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>Orion's eyes dart between the group, before he finally says out loud.

"Yeah. This is awkward. I'm going to go ahead as well."

>He then just vanishes, not leaving behind any glamorous looking trails or glowing portals or anything of the sort.


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>Doctor places a hand on his mask as he shakes his head:

"Phrasing. That one's on me honestly."

>Magister gives a deep sigh as Lisa disappears, stating:

"….This woman will be the death of me one day. I swear."

>Turning towards Barbatos, Magister then points a gloved finger at him, stating:

"If this somehow is a trap? I'll drop you in the Eifonixian Abyss myself."

>Barbatos squints his helmet lenses, aware of the nature of the threat.

"Noted. Let us be on our way then - I wouldn't want to keep your associates waiting."

>Doctor then makes a gesture with his hand - generating a bright golden circular rune around the 3 of them. The rune then slowly rises up - removing their bodies from the Axiom through magical transportation.


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>Location: Seychelles Islands
>Time: Indeterminate

>Doctor, Magister and Barbatos appear hovering over the waters separating the miniature archipelago. Both of the Sorcerers look over the large bodies of water below them, still hovering in the air.

"The resonance pattern. How's it responding so far?"

>Magister asks this to Doctor, as the latter begins making a series of gestures with his hands. Golden mana particles trace across his fingers as he whispers an incantation.

"Artificium. Tuum nexum nobis aperi. Efficaciter ligate foedus."

>The depths of the waters then begin to rumble intensely - causing large waves to pulsate from a central point. A bright red glow then begins to emanate from the undercurrent of the waters in addition to the increased wave pulses.

>Magister turns his attention to Barbatos, as he states:

"I thought you said your converts were guarding the artifacts?"

>Barbatos then states:

"They are. It is likely they have avoided detection through subterranean means."

>Just then, a flurry of dark figures burst out of the waters - massive numbers of hooded figures with masks and armors. Dozens of them begin to swarm around three figures, as they begin to charge up elemancy magic.

"Oh, there it is."

"You had to ask."


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"Both of you, shut up and defend!"

>Barbatos says as he prepares a cryonic blast of ice - deflecting the first surge of magical fire sent in their direction.

"Can't you tell them to stand down? They're your own people, aren't they?"

>Doctor makes a twitch motion with his wrist, conjuring his bladed combat staff. He then rushes towards a nearby group of combat magicians, beginning to fight them hand to hand.

"They have lost trust in my vision in the weeks of my absence. How are they to believe that I am not compromised? Perhaps your redheaded friend was correct about the nature of treachery."

>Magister narrows his eyes at Barbatos for a moment, stating:

"…..Perhaps she was."

>He then snaps his fingers and whispers an incantation:

"Susanō no umi"

>Immediately, a large omnidirectional wave of bright sapphire blue water appears. The mystical water immediately flash freezes a large portion of the attacking mage force - causing them to drop down into the sea like icicles.

"Uh, isn't that a bit problematic? Doubt they've got gills."

>Doctor states, continuing to deflect and counter blade strikes from his armed opponents.

>Barbatos scoffs, stating:

"I've trained them in magic. If they learned anything then they would've remembered to cast a passive enchantment on their armor."

>The armored Djinn then curls his hand into a fist - causing his blue ring to glow again. The ring converts more elemental attacks into water surges - which then mimic the flash freezing caused by Magister.

"And here I thought you'd go for the kill - they're not worth anything to you anymore, are they?"

>Magister asks, inquisitively.

"Hmph. They're not deserving of an honorable death - squabbling and factionalizing in my absence."

>Barbatos says as he watches the frozen bodies of his former subordinates quickly fall to the waters below.


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"It's cute how they all try to make themselves look like they're the biggest in the room, right, Blondie, Brillie?"

>Lisa pets the creature on her shoulder, sighing.

"Really thought I'd trained Mgstr down there better, but apparently not, guess you really don't know your students anymore after they avoid you for a few years. . ."

>Lisa sighs again as a bolt of fire flies past her head, turning around without any motion from her and hitting the sender right in the chest.

"Feel free to go down and help them Blondie, but I think they have it covered, so I'm just going to try and maintain some element of surprise and just go for what we came here for, oh, and. . ."

>Lisa brings her hand up to her mouth and circles around it with her thumb and forefinger, blowing through it and producing a smoke that surrounds the area.

"That should keep anyone from looking in, seeing as 'being subtle' isn't in our little construct's dictionary - I really hope they're not thinking of trying to put him in the wider earth. . ."

>Lisa slips down from her perch and casually walks past the guards, doing so with an ease that suggest she's not there at all.

"Rule of thumb, if people are preventing you from going in a direction, whatever's interesting is in said direction."


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"Egh. I'll just stick near you I think. Always feel awkward around those guys. Especially when they're together. Makes me think of their… coincidental dating preferences."

>Orion follows along Lisa. He takes a casual step out of the way as one of the guards is suddenly tossed into the smoke cloud and next to him. Without saying anything he casually grabs the guard with one hand and tosses him away like he was weightless.

"Weird place for the Thaumians to keep their stuff. It's been a while since I bothered reading anything about them, since they're not native to my place but don't they usually end up engineering their own realm whenever they pop up somewhere?"


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>Magister turns towards Doctor, raising an eyebrow as he says:

"You finished having fun there?"

>Doctor remotely spins his twinblade with his hand, flicking his wrist as he recalls the weapon back to his hand. He then flips in the air, delivering a backside strike to the last set of combat mages. As they fall down to the oceans below - he then states:

"Hey, I rarely get to do this. Give me a break, Aiden."

>Magister rolls his eyes as he then makes another set of gestures with his gloved hands. The waters around the islands then begin to part - revealing a large glowing red light - a jagged pattern that seemingly rips through reality.

>As he remotely grabs the dozens of downed combat mages with his remote telekinesis - he then pushes them through space, disappearing in a series of large bright blue spots. Banishment spells in actions.

"Where'd you send them?"

>Doctor asks as he casually flies towards Magister.

"The Nicean holding space, so the usual. We'll interrogate them later if need be."

>Motioning towards the large red fissure in the waters - Magister then states:

"That's our way in. The artifact resonated across dimensions - just like Barbatos said. Wait a minute…."

>Magister looks around.

"Where is he?"

>Doctor thinks for a moment.

"He likely went through while we were distracted - same as the others."

"Typical. Let's not keep them waiting then."

>Mosaic and Doctor then quickly fly through the large red portal - convening on the other side, as the waters naturally flow back together near the islands.


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>Location: "Pyronis" (Adjacent Dimension)
>Time: Indeterminate

>The other side of the glowing red portal reveals a large expanse of land - seemingly covered with thick black smoke and fumes. Large magma bodies flow across rivers for miles - as the rock formations shudder and grind together under tectonic plates.

>Large rock beings, towering for miles, trek slowly across the mountain regions and lake beds of molten magma. Soot also spreads across the lands, as the average temperature of the dimension maintains a high level - seemingly causing certain materials to spontaneously combust, which repeats the cycle of heating and immolation then combustion.

>As Magister and Doctor arrive in the dimension, he then immediately recognizes the area, stating:

"Pyronis? They were hiding here the entire time? Why didn't I check here earlier?"

>Muttering to himself he then states:

"Idiot. What kind of Sorcerer Supreme are you?"

>Doctor looks around, noting Barbatos standing in the middle of a crater.

"There he is."

>Both of them then slowly approach the figure in the crater, as they consider their approach to find the artifact.


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"You know, Brillie, I think I get why you ate these people, they're very pretentious, still. . ."

>Lisa lets the creature down from her shoulder, carefully placing it on the ground.

"Your tastes are very helpful here, go fish."

>The creature sniffs the air then runs off, having caught a sent.

"You know, Blondie, it's really useful to domesticate creatures like Brillie, saves a little energy, but a little is still some."

>Lisa thinks for a moment.

"Oh, what did you mean 'coincidental dating preferences'?"


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>Orion groans and covers his face with his hand for a moment.

"You know. My sister. They both have a thing for her. It's weird."

>He then turns his attention towards one of the giant stone creatures in the background, trying to distract himself.

"Anyway, I'm sure your pet is really helpful. I'm just not much of a familiar guy."


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>Barbatos is found kneeling next to a pair of deceased mages - more of his subordinates. As the Djinn runs his hand across the masks of his former pupils, he gives an exasperated sigh.

"Fools. All of you. The plan was to bring the artifacts together. Not hide them…"

>Still kneeling, he can sense the arrival of the Sorcerers. Given their arrival, he then says out loud:

"I suppose you would criticize me for being an ineffective leader?"

>As Magister and Doctor stand off to the side, staring at the dead bodies of the mages, he then says:

"How many stray humans did you manage to convince before we stopped you? Hundreds? Thousands?"

>Barbatos slowly stands up, rising to his feet as he examines his rings once more.

"As many who would come to believe that their lives had greater meaning. Far greater than what your society had given to them, with the futility of their early life paths."

>Magister then looks at Barbatos, stating:

"You stated that the Thaumians created you as the first Djinn, used you as a power source. What could've possibly driven you to change your own life path? Why would they design you with the capacity to rebel?"

"They didn't."

>Barbatos lowers his gauntlet and looks over his shoulder at Magister and Doctor.

"Lucien, the Monarch of Thaumia, created me with a conditional behavioral set. It was only after my exposure to the Spectral Rings, that I was truly able to break free of my 'prime directive'."

>Magister crosses his arms:

"….Lisa was right. You're a biological machine, and you became self-aware by accident. This Lucien wasn't really careful with his toys, was he?"

"Lucien was the first of the Thaumians to fully harness the power of Thaumaturgic Magic. He used his power to establish Thaumian society and give himself virtual immortality."

>Looking at Doctor, Magister then says:

"Let's go find the artifact. Where is it Barbatos?"

>Barbatos points in the distance, towards a large volcanic structure.

"Right there. The artifact's resonance structure is pointing in that direction. The relay I established with my rings works as a compass of sorts."

>Doctor nods, as he and Magister then step through space-time in a door.

>Appearing next to both Lisa and Orion, Doctor and Magister begin hovering beside them.

"Can we not talk about that? Not even sure why that matters to you, Orion."

>Magister is completely silent, likely due to Lisa's presence. He continues hovering forward in silence.



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"Oh he's not a familiar, his full name is something like 'Brillathazor the Devourer of Worlds' - or something like that."

>Lisa kneels down and pets the creature.

"I much prefer him as Brillie, a lot less teeth and tentacles."

"Good nose on him too, but then again, when he said 'worlds' he really meant 'energy', especially magical energy, Brillie just loves magical energy, don't you Brillie?"

>Lisa pets the creature and feeds it another treat.

"Much better than hoping an arrogant fool didn't put failsafes in his old tools."

>Lisa looks over at Magister.

"Anyway, sure is weird that two of your colleagues are dating your sister from other universes, weirdest I've got is the fact that I detected too many mes on Earth when we were back there."


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>Orion raises his eyebrow at the "too many mes" comment.

"That is weird."

>He clears his throat and then goes back to trying to change the topic away from involving who's dating his sister.

"Anyway. What are we doing now? We found the artifact?"


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>Magister speaks, while refusing to look at Lisa in any way.

"The fact that you genuinely think a single Djinn would be enough of a problem for us, is beyond insulting. Then again, I shouldn't be surprised - given how desperate you've been to demean us this entire time."

>Doctor groans as he then says:

"Come on Aiden, not right now-"

>Cutting him off, Magister then states, with actual anger in his voice:

"She has done nothing but denigrate and mock us this entire time, Isaac. Because that's all she ever does. Demean, mock and look down on her 'inferiors'. In her asinine state of mind, she's objectively correct in every regard."

>Doctor then moves to float in front of Magister, hand outstretched with an accusatory finger.

"Now we both know that's not fair. It was my idea to give Barbatos the benefit of the doubt and bring him out anyways. Yes, I took precautions, but Lisa's right."

>Magister narrows his eyes at Doctor from behind his spectacles.

"Have some dignity and stand up for yourself Isaac. She doesn't need your protection. What she needs is humility."

"Then go kick her ass, by all means. If you're confident enough."

>Still feeling his anger rising, Magister instinctively curls his hand into a fist. Noticing this, Doctor holds a hand out in a calming gesture.

"Hey, that's the old you coming out again Aiden. You don't want to put yourself back in that situation again."

>Taking a moment to finally look at Lisa with venom behind his spectacles, he then says:

"Finishing my 'studying' under you was the best and worst thing that ever happened to me. You're a good teacher, but you're also a bitch."

>Magister then flies ahead at supersonic speeds, leaving Doctor and the others behind.

"…Ahh shit, there he goes again."


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"Let him work off some steam, he's no help as he is."

>Lisa looks over her shoulder at the direction Magister went for a moment.

"For the record, this is not about being right or superior, I just find our construct friend's desire to have the artifacts for himself suspicious - and it's not like we need him anyway."

>Lisa sighs.

"Also I'm a terrible teacher if he thinks I'm implying that a djinn can beat you in a fight."


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>Doctor looks at Lisa for a moment, before saying:

"….He's awfully emotional around you, and I'm not sure why. He's never displayed this degree of personal offense towards anyone's statements before. Not mine. Not Stephanie's. Obviously not Orion's. No one's."

>Thinking more intently, Doctor puts a finger to the front of his mask, stating:

"….Just yours….Huh."

>He then looks back at Lisa, asking:

"You were his teacher right? Aiden's had dozens of teachers - his favorite being Prometheus from what he's told me. So why is he this animated towards you?"

>Doctor then asks another question:

"For the record, I agree with you about Barbatos. While his rings are still mostly disabled on my end, I can't shake the feeling that he's just using us for some ulterior motive…."

>As Doctor speaks, Barbatos remains far away on the crater site, kneeling at his dead subjects. His mind wanders at the sight of their bodies, pondering decisions of his past….

>At the same time, Magister continues flying towards the volcano formation in the distance, gaining speed as he begins to generate enough force to exert shockwaves that rip entire mountains apart.


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"He's stuck in the past - he thinks this is some kind of lesson or test from me."

>Lisa picks up her pet and lets it move to its shoulder perch again.

"It isn't, but there are always more chances to learn, you would all do well to remember that. We must be constant in our adapting to become the best we can be for our role."

>With the creature handled, Lisa begins walking in the direction of the artifact.

"Now, are you going to stand around or are we going to do what we came here to do. . ."

>The experienced sorcerer looks over at Barbatos.

"That includes you, construct."


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>Barbatos ignores Lisa entirely and turns to Doctor, stating:

"…..I must admit, I misjudged you early on. Being driven with a single minded goal has a way of clouding one's judgment. As seems to be the case with your compatriot."

>Looking back over at the volcano formation in the distance, he then says:

"He cannot make the same mistakes that I have demonstrated. Your mercy is the reason why I still exist - I recognize that now."

>Space then begins to distort around Barbatos as he says:

"So I must return the favor."

>Barbatos then disappears in a fold in space-time, teleporting himself to the top of the volcano formation where Magister has arrived.

"Right….well then."

>Doctor hovers higher into the air, saying to Lisa:

"Adaptation's good - but it doesn't mean throwing away everything that we are. We're still human aren't we? Well, Aiden and I are half human - so I guess it's relative, huh?"

>Reorienting himself in mid-air, Doctor then flies forward at speeds similar to those of Magister - creating sound waves as he flies towards the volcanic formation.


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>As Magister arrives at the large structure - he's stopped by 2 developments. First, the strength and heat of the supernatural magma begins to affect his body for a moment - causing him to cast a stronger elemancy shield. The second the development involves the appearance of Barbatos before him - standing on the ground of the formation, while he remains in the air.

"….What do you want, Djinn? I need to get the artifact."

>Barbatos then holds up his hand, as a bright purple light emanates from one of his rings.

"As obliged. I can sense it with my rings, remember?"

>The ground begins to rumble with power as a large magical structure slowly rises from the magma geyser of the volcano. The magical structure is red in color with a bright orange light emanating from its ornate protrusions. An artifact clearly revolving around the notion of fire - to fit the aesthetic of the Pyronis Dimension.

"….I will relinquish the search for the artifacts of my own accord. There is little meaning in continuing - with my circumstances controlled by your greater power."

>Somewhat taken aback, Magister hovers closer to the ground, still suspicious.

"…Why the sudden change of heart? Don't you want Lucien and the Thaumians to pay for what they've done?"

>Barbatos looks up at the fire artifact, now hovering in the air above him. For a minute he thinks about his past, before ultimately responding with:

"….I wanted revenge against them for what they had done to me. But after destroying so many of their facsimiles. After being defeated by your fellow Sorcerer Supreme. Remaining trapped, alone with my thoughts for nearly a month. It became harder to justify my approach."

>Barbatos then moves the artifact towards Magister - who remotely maneuvers it with his own high order telekinesis. Without even moving a muscle, Magister maintains control of the object, as Barbatos places his hand over each other.

>A bright light emanates from his armored body - until it subsides, revealing his natural form as Iblis the Djinn.

"Disarmament? Or just a formality?"

>Iblis gives a light shrug, stating:

"There's no real difference. You, the woman and the other two male Sorcerers - you are so far beyond my power and my capacity to fight, that there's no point even engaging in one. But because of that same power, I offer you this deal."

>Iblis moves a portion of his long black hair out of his face - allowing Magister to view his blood red eyes, similar to his own.

"I will relinquish any and all attempt at taking on the Thaumians, as well as any attempts to command any sort of power in this world. As long as you take care of the Specters. The souls of my slain bretheren, still remaining in the space between dimensions."

>Magister speaks next, with clarity and understanding of the request:

"You want me to pass them to the afterlife."

>Iblis nods.

"Either that, or revive them in some way. Their souls are still bound to their spectral forms, due to their immense magical power. They have not fully been destroyed - just disembodied in the literal sense. Either way, through the afterlife or through resurrection - please look after my fellow Djinn. Give them the peace they were denied for millennia."

>Magister, without hesitation then says:

"Of course. I promise you that I will, Iblis. You're doing the right thing by relinquishing your desire for vengeance, and putting your animosities aside."

>Iblis then looks at Magister, stating:

"Perhaps you should do the same with the redhead woman. I know what she means to you. I can sense it."

>Magister's eyes narrow.

"We're talking about you here - not me. Besides, there's someone with blue hair who matters to me far more than she ever could."

>Iblis gives a look of amusement, saying:

"Your words seem confident, but your heart says otherwise. They are both very important to you - for different reasons, yes. The Aether ring doesn't lie - and while I can't manipulate your soul, you are doing a very poor job of suppressing your feelings."

>As Iblis speaks, the glow of a pink ring emanates from his ring finger - accentuating his point.


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>Doctor arrives a few moments shortly after Iblis finishes speaking. Hovering beside Magister, he asks:

"Good job you two. Grabbed without an issue. So where's Iblis taking us next?"

>Magister turns to Doctor and states:

"He's done chasing them."

>Doctor gives a confused sound.

"Eh? Really? Why now?"

"Because he's realized that there's no point in having us shadow him if he can't do anything about it."


"…..And because you locked him in a mini island dimension for about a month - forces you to think through your life up to that point."


>Doctor hovers in mid-air and turns his attention down towards Iblis to speak:

"You sure about this Iblis? I'm guessing you had terms for us if this was your decision."

>Iblis explains his terms to Doctor, as he did to Magister prior.

"…..That's more than acceptable. We're going to have to do something about where to put you though. Earth isn't a convocation ground for magicians top-side. But throwing you into their underground society won't be a good idea either."

>Magister then has a thought.

"Your friend, the Son of the Monkey King. He has an abode in the atmosphere of the planet, does he not?"

>Doctor then lightly taps his mask, making a stupified expression.

"Duh, of course. Sun's a perfect fit. Iblis should also be able to help him with his current job."


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"It appears that cool heads prevailed then, good."

>Lisa finishes her walk to the structure.

"I see little need for me to remain if everything is resolved, so if you will. . ."

>Lisa turns around, bringing her staff up to make another portal.


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>Noticing Iblis looking at him after the statement, Magister sighs and floats towards Lisa.

>As he then hovers before her, all he says is:

"…You were partially right about the nature of 'constructs' as you call them. But even they can change - as we've just seen. That's all I have to say."

>Iblis coughs loudly, forcing Magister to sigh in annoyance.

"…..I'm sorry for doubting you, Lisa. There. Now get out of here."

>Magister turns and floats back towards the artifact, preparing an incantation to teleport it back to the Axiom.


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>Orion already left


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>Lisa stops moving her staff for a moment, the lines created by it hovering in place.

"Wholly right, my former pupil, as I am with your 'favourite teacher'."

>She finishes the circle, opening up a crack in reality.

"You would do well to remember that."

>With that parting comment, Lisa walks through the portal, disappearing.


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>After Lisa has disappeared, Doctor turns towards Iblis as Magister finishes the incantation - transporting the artifact to the Axiom.

"In that case, we better be going then."

>Doctor then makes a set of hand gestures - causing the three of them to be transported away.


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>Location: The Axiom - Nexus of Magic
>Time: Indeterminate

>Doctor and Magister observe both artifacts in the living quarters of the Axiom. The artifacts themselves have been shrunken in size to more properly accommodate the living space - using refined dimensional magic.

"We'll have to get the remaining three artifacts at a consistent rate. That, and there's no way we're going to be able to avoid attracting the Thaumian's attention when that happens."

>Magister thinks to himself as he assumes a thinking position with his gloved hand. Rubbing his cheek, he ponders for a moment.

"Iblis mentioned that they had creatures far worse than him and the rest of his Djinn. Those creatures are likely the reason why they've sealed themselves off. Likely either too strong for them to effectively control - or too much of a secret to reveal to their enemies ahead of time."

"The Gods?"

"Possibly. Considering the circumstances around their disappearance. I'd make sense that they'd want to craft a weapon or two that could kill them in revenge. A being that can kill a God from the dimensions above. That's not something to be taken lightly - and makes Barbatos look minuscule in comparison."

>Doctor then casually points at Magister, stating:

"….You OK? I know having to deal with her wasn't a fun experience - but taking precautions was a good tactic."

>Magister rolls his eyes at the mention of Lisa, as he says:

"As far as I'm concerned, I want nothing to do with her and her idiosyncrasies. Best knowledge teacher or not - she's still an arrogant b-"

>Doctor cranes his head to the side, giving Magister an annoyed look himself, behind his mask.

"Fine. She's not as bad as I say she is - but I still want nothing to do with her."

>Confused, Doctor then asks:

"You never told me exactly what she taught you that left such an impression on you. It's all training and fieldwork and spellcrafting. Also reading, lots of reading. What could she have possibly taught you that could leave you this upset with her?"

>Doctor says this with genuine concern in his voice as Magister dusts off his robes and cloak. His vantablack spectacles, always perfectly situated on the bridge of his nose, somehow reflect the light casted through the Axiom's windows.

"It's not what she taught me, it's what she did as a form of her classic manipulations."

>Annoyed, Doctor finally presses the issue.

"What the hell did she do?"

>Beginning to walk towards Doctor, Magister then speaks, right as he passes him by:

"What every teenage guy wants. What they think makes them a man."

>Magister then continues to walk off towards the large hallways of the Axiom.


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"…She did what?"

>Doctor says, spinning around and quickly moving to run towards Magister - catching up with him and standing in front of him.

"How in the actual fuck is that even considered teaching?"

>Magister gives Doctor a look of equal annoyance, as he makes a sarcastic gesture with his gloved hands - bringing them out from underneath his cloak.

"Imagine what I was thinking at the time. A 16 year old boy thrown into a massive, cosmic responsibility that he couldn't even hope to comprehend. Yet my "teacher" decided the best course of action for remedying my 'problematic characteristics' - was doing exactly what you're thinking right now. Yeah, she did all of it."

>Magister then starts walking past Doctor, moving towards the Observatory Deck which will allow him easy access back to his universe. All the while, Doctor is walking sideways - keeping pace with him while asking him questions.

"You didn't tell anyone about it? Thoth. Pasithea. Odin. Prometheus? No one?"

"They wouldn't care, since they're just 'constructs' as she so eloquently put it. She knew what she was doing. Taking advantage of my emotionally vulnerable state - as well as my naïveté as a teenager. In the end, she justifies it by saying that the results speak for themselves."

>Magister stops walking and makes another exaggerated motion with his hands, now speaking in a clearly sarcastic tone of voice.

"The Sorcerer Supreme. 'Praeceptorus Lacertus'. Magister. Greatest magician and sorcerer of the entire universe, and all adjacent dimensions."

>Dropping the facade and now speaking in a normal, more venomous tone of voice, Magister continues:

"Her profane disregard for everything and anything moral, ethical or even humanistic should be noted, Isaac. Despite everything she says, and everything she does - she is a borderline sociopath who doesn't care about anyone or anything but the mission."

>Moving past Doctor, Magister then says one final statement:

"Remember that, for your own sake."

>He then disappears through a large fractal mirror in the Observatory Deck - moving towards his own Sanctum in the adjacent universe.


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>Location: Sanctum (Earth-1) - "Locus Scientia" - Room of Knowledge
>Time: Hours Later

"No, this isn't what I need. Where's the Astral reconfiguration matrix tome?"

>Magister tosses a tome aside - not watching as it remotely flies away back towards its place on a bookshelf. As he continues looking for what he needs, he hears a voice from down the hall.

"Tough day, Sorcerer Supreme?"

>Looking up, Magister sighs as he looks at the man leaning on the side of a bookcase - at the end of the aisle.

"What are you doing here, Prometheus?"

>The mythological being leans off the bookshelf and begins walking towards Magister. Sporting midnight black hair and deep blood red eyes similar to his former pupil's - the Titan then stands before Magister, looking him straight in the eyes.

"I know that posture, and that look. No mistake about it - even with those fancy artifacts covering your eyes. She's still bothering you isn't she?"

>Scoffing, Magister pushes past Prometheus and makes his way towards the center of the room. Placing his hands on the table, he starts looking at the assortment of tomes and scrolls that have remotely moved their way to the table - as per his command.

"I know you far better than you are willing to admit. Though I may be a feeble 'construct' as some might say-"

"You're as sentient as I am. To hell with a stupid fucking label."

>Raising an eyebrow at the tone of voice of his former pupil, Prometheus takes note of the anger boiling over from his body. The rage barely kept under control.

"….Is this about what she did?"

"I don't know what you're talking about Prometheus. If you're not here for something, you're welcome to stay, but leave me to my business."

>Shrugging, Prometheus then says:

"I would imagine you tried to say the same to her before she seduced you."

>Silence fills the air in the room as Magister slowly looks up from the desk - and towards his teacher, still standing on the opposite side of the table.

"…..You knew? This entire time?"

>Shaking his head in disbelief, Magister looks down for a moment, before looking back up at his teacher - further enraged.

"….YOU KNEW?!"


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>Prometheus, completely unphased by his former pupil's rage, simply shrugs nonchalantly again at the accusation.

"Of course I knew, Aiden. You were, and frankly still are, my pupil. My responsibility. I would've been a terrible judge of character had I not been able to discern the change in disposition of a mere sixteen year old."

>Shaking his head again, Magister pushes himself away from the table in anger as he puts a gloved hand to his head - still reeling from the weight of the revelation.

"Then all this time….You could've said something - but you didn't. You saw me there just….grappling with my feelings. My emotions. Why didn't you say something? Anything…..Why didn't you-"

"Because it made you stronger."

>Silent again, Magister slowly turns his attention back towards Prometheus, stating:

"….You sound like her. As careless and reckless and borderline sociopathic as her. She doesn't even care about you as a person! All she sees is a collection of structural components. Cogs in a cognitive machine. She doesn't respect you. She doesn't acknowledge you. So why in the hell would you ever take her side?"

"Because I care not for her in any way. The decision was made on my own accord, as a rational interpretation of then-current factors. You were unfocused, emotionally volatile in a manner quite similar to how you are acting now. You were aimless and directionless, and quite frankly….what is the term you humans use? Ah yes….pent up."

>Scoffing, Magister then says:

"It's your job to ensure that I mature emotionally in a holistic and realistic way."

"And you did, she ensured that. The fact that you are so angry and resentful of her decision I imagine has no real impact on her considerations of the matter."

>Magister still looks beyond livid and frustrated as he asks:

"…..Then why even bother teaching me? Why not just let her do all of it?"

>Prometheus walks to the side of the table and walks up to Magister's side, placing a hand on his shoulder.

"Because I meant what I said. It made you stronger - and you had the emotional and psychological capacity to mature yourself in that situation. And you did. It may not have been the most pleasant revelation for you to experience that - but that is the nature of life. It is unpredictable, cruel and unforgiving in nature."

>Prometheus then removes his hand from Magister's shoulder - crossing them together once again as he says:

You must become stronger than reality's innate capacity to break. You must be steady when the current of pain is unrelenting. You must be resolute when those around you appear to have nothing but doubt. You must have conviction, discipline and focus - when any and all obstacles would attempt to lead you astray."

>Prometheus then points to Magister's chest.

"Even if said obstacles may come from within."


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>Magister is silent for a moment, not responding to any statements by Prometheus.

"For the past year or two after having graduated from your training, I have seen the manner in which you carry yourself, Aiden. The formality, the almost regal nature of your appearance and body language. Your eclectic capacity for sophisticated wording. A tendency very clearly inspired by my own vernacular."

>The Titan of Knowledge and Fire then looks directly at Magister through his sunglasses.

"Much like you are with Odin - you are very clearly mirroring my behavioral patterns and appearance - in an attempt to reinvent yourself as a logician. An erudite being driven only by logic and consequence. Structure, knowledge and rationality. That is commendable - but you have been limiting yourself by the very same emotional quandary that has driven Sorceress Igestis to take…..drastic actions as you would call them."

>Magister then finally speaks.

"My connection to my emotions, and my past. Sentiment."

>Prometheus nods.

"Precisely. You have been restrained by the anchor of emotional fixation. Almost to the point of desperation. You have exceeded both my and my colleagues' expectations as a Sorcerer in every regard - except for your focus, or lack thereof. Your single minded connection to sentimentality has been your greatest weakness."

"One would argue that my sentimentality spared Iblis."

"That was your capacity for empathy unified with your logical reasoning and critical analysis skills. Sparing Iblis upholds the conventional ethics of your species - while converting an enemy into a potential ally - as you have done with the Djinn. That is not your sentimentality speaking, my boy. That is your cold, calculating logic."

>Magister gives a smirk underneath his cloak's collar as he then says:

"You're the first person to recognize the intent behind that plan."

"No I'm not. I'm the first to praise you for it - which is why I'm clearly your preferred mentor."


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>Magister nods, slowly as he responds:

"That I am more than willing to concede. Whether that's because of egocentrism or a vainglorious desire for self-validation, I can't say. What I can say though - is that I achieve the intended results of my actions."

>Prometheus nods again, approvingly.

"That you do, Sorcerer Supreme. You do not require any more guidance from me, as I feel you are no longer the vulnerable teenage boy you once were - when the Crystal brought you before us. Instead, I only see a capable young man, willing to forego his own emotional sentimentality for the greater good."

>Magister nods and slowly bows his head in recognition of his teacher.

"Thank you, Prometheus."

>Rising back up, Magister takes a moment to focus - with single-minded determination on his goal. At that moment, a flurry of tomes fill the air. Hundreds, if not thousands of tomes are remotely flying around the library in a perfect configuration sequence - without any issues. As the tomes begin to form definitive flight patters in the large open room - Magister remotely wills one particular tome into his hand in the blink of an eye; grabbing it effortlessly as he looks at the title.

["Reconfiguration Matrix: De Arte Mentis Mutantur et Mundus Scindens"]

>At that moment, the rest of the tomes immediately fly back towards their positions on various shelves and drawers, just as quickly as they flew off as well.

>Holding the exact tome he was looking for in his gloved hand, Magister then says:

"Single minded determination and focus. The root of all success, overcoming all odds and potential adversities."

>Prometheus nods approvingly at his former pupil's display of control and mastery.

"You will, in time, become far more powerful than I ever imagined. Even as your power currently is staggering enough. I was right to choose to teach you. Pay no mind to the words and statements of others. Not your close friends, nor your family. Not even Sorceress Igestis, or Lisa, herself."

>Prometheus then raises his head slightly and changes his stature to appear more upright than before.

"Stand tall, my former apprentice. Demonstrate your conviction and show them all why you are Primus Magicus. Magic and Power incarnate."

>Magister gives a light smile as he says:

"I'm the only version of me that knows that so far. And that was by accident, after-"

"After you touched the font of power in the Sanctum and drained its magical essence into yourself with a touch. To think that a mere boy could absorb the entire energy output of a super structure dimension - with a touch."

>Prometheus shrugs nonchalantly again.

"Nevertheless, you are my Magnum Opus, Odin would say much the same. Possibly even Thoth. Stand tall and move forward, Magister - never look back, ever again."

>Prometheus then disappears in a plume of fire - a clear signifier of his mythological importance. Now alone in the Locus Scientia once again, Magister looks at the tome at in his gloved hand:

{"Well then. Back to work, I believe."}

>Magister casually flicks open the large tome with a gesture from his gloved finger - as tens of thousands of pages appear, demonstrating the dimensionally transcendent size of the book. As he begins reading, he slowly walks to a large chair in the room and continues maintaining his focus - clearly and effectively.

[The End]

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