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Isabella Marie Swan ᗜ "Aegis" ([personal profile] autokinetic) wrote2013-02-19 12:17 pm

these are my villagers

Bella's routine carries on, though her classwork advances and the birds (and antelopes, and later bears and butterflies, so far all ultimately peaceful after she solves their respective puzzles) develop more of a civilization under her direction. (With random changes that Sue sometimes makes to the landscape; she'll log on one day to find that he's put up a dovecote-tower on a mountain or left a stack of firewood where a forest used to be or taught her birds a choreographed dance.) She has basic infrastructure under control by the time she's seven and has to work out how to solve more social issues: the bears don't like how the antelopes smell, the butterfly eggs can't survive in the northerly villages she shortsightedly settles a colony of them in and the birds won't look after them for free, the antelopes want open spaces and object to urban development, the birds seem to think she's theirs because her avatar is one and she found them first and they sometimes get into spats with the others over this, a butterfly is orphaned in a rockslide and starts following her around like she's his mommy. It's challenging and it's surprisingly devoid of war, but she supposes they handle her training for war in other settings besides this one.

They don't see each other outside of the fantasy game, so they don't talk (though she can write words, sometimes, if there's a reason). He goes into an army - Condor to start, he's traded to Meerkat soon after. He's a little before the rest of his launch.

She's a little before the rest of her launch too; she's getting restless playing in the battleroom with people who've had only as much chance to practice as she has. She gets promoted when she's not quite eight yet, and goes to Flame.
pythbox: A book. (Default)

[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 09:25 pm (UTC)(link)
The first battle Flame has after Bella's promotion—about a month later—is against Meerkat.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 09:44 pm (UTC)(link)
The battle is close, nearly a draw.

Halfway through, an enemy soldier careens directly into their formation, rolls along the legs of a half-frozen outer spoke, flashes the sharpshooter, and then pushes off toward the far wall. The long trajectory is a bad idea; a Flame soldier from another toon manages to flash him on the way.

His incessant giggling might be familiar.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 09:56 pm (UTC)(link)
The next time she logs on to the fantasy game, Sue has erected a monument near her original village: crudely carved stone letters, twice as tall as a bird person, that say WHEE!

Several curious bird people are climbing it. One seems to be investigating how the vertical bar of the exclamation mark is floating in the air like that. Another is measuring the height difference between the two Es.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:03 pm (UTC)(link)
The word behaves as though it is one contiguous object, even though there are gaps between the letters. When one part is pushed hard enough, the whole thing shifts.

On close inspection, it's not a kind of rock that occurs naturally in this region. Or any other that Bella is familiar with.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:06 pm (UTC)(link)
Something is on fire in the distance. That's a pretty clear sign.
Edited 2013-02-19 22:07 (UTC)
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:30 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue's bird has a bonfire going, past the edge of Bella's explored territory. It's much longer than it is wide, and glowing in the heart of the fire is a fancy curlicued arrow shape, an arrowhead at the end of a series of undulating spirals. He stands to one side, fanning the flames with his wings.

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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:33 pm (UTC)(link)
He giggle-caws and takes off.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:44 pm (UTC)(link)
He leads her only a short distance, to an uneven ravine with several large chunks taken out of the near edge. The rock is the same stuff from WHEE!. Sue lands, points to it, and starts preening.
Edited 2013-02-19 22:44 (UTC)
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:48 pm (UTC)(link)
Nope. Some of the gouge marks around the missing pieces match Sue's talons.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 10:56 pm (UTC)(link)
Nope.

Sue watches her for a moment, and then reaches over and claws at the rocks. He has to work at it, but he gets another piece sliced off (basketball-sized in comparison to her avatar) and offers it to her.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:00 pm (UTC)(link)
It will not float. It acts pretty much like a rock.

Sue watches her for about thirty seconds, and then takes off again, headed back toward his bonfire.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:06 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue lands by the fire.

He points a talon at the fire.

He points a talon back toward the place where he got the rock.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:15 pm (UTC)(link)
He caws a laugh.

The fire is dying down; Sue hovers over the embers for a moment, then takes the still-glowing center curl of the arrow in his talons. The head and tail lift with it. It is heavy, but apparently Sue's avatar can fly with heavy things.

He takes it back to that lake she noticed on the way, and drops it in with a hiss and an enormous splash.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:23 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue, meanwhile, waits for the big piece to stop glowing with heat and then hauls it awkwardly out of the lake and sets it up so that it points from the direction of her territory toward the direction of the magic rock. Flat on the ground, to be more readable from the air.

Then he finds Bella.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:26 pm (UTC)(link)
He opens his beak and breathes a little flame.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:32 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue shakes his head, claws a line in the dirt with a blobby circle at the end—a thermometer—slashes a line across it very close to the top, then points at her crown-to-be and draws a sun bursting with rays.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:35 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue drops a little more fuel on the fire that's cooking her crown. The small size means it's glowing in only a few minutes.

When it reaches a bright yellow-white colour similar to the way the arrow looked when it was done, he nods several times.
pythbox: A book. (Default)

[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:48 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue helpfully dives after it for her.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:53 pm (UTC)(link)
He laughs, too, and then he hugs her with his flamelike wings.
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[personal profile] pythbox 2013-02-19 11:56 pm (UTC)(link)
Sue wanders off in another direction entirely.