Campaign of the Month: July 2011
Sins of the First Age
Mnemia's Anima Banner and Harbinger
Her feet together, her hands relaxed at her sides, Mnemia began to call out to Harbinger, drawing the warstrider out of Elsewhere. Though she stood perfectly still, there was no way an observer would be fooled into thinking the woman was inactive.
Immediately upon starting the summoning the caste mark of the dawn upon her brow began to glitter softly, separating from the other tattoos that adorned her face, normally masking the persistent brand.
As the seconds ticked away the radiance began to increase as the woman drew the essence necessary for the costly process. But still, Mnemia remained unmoving. Within 30 seconds the flare was blinding as a halo with a diameter close to a meter and a half began to circle the air above her head. The construct was not a full ring, a break near the front making it look more like a horseshoe. And though it was centered on her, it wasn’t level. The back end of the halo extended a quarter of a meter above the plane of the exalt’s head while the two front projections were roughly eye level.
With essence continuing to be channeled the light coming off the halo seemed to thicken, looking more like thin tendril of fire cascading off of the surface. Slowly, and then faster as the process continued, the lines of light began to trend towards the earth at Mnemia’s feet. The effect was similar to hair rapidly growing longer, but these wisps of radiance behaved more like water, a rain of energy falling around the Tya only to splash as the drops hit the ground before fully dissipating.
And still Mnemia continued to pour her power into the summoning. The warstrider and the systems attached to it required a massive amount of fuel to work properly, fuel the woman had to provide herself. But now her eyes slowly came open as the halo quickly lost most of it’s soft golden color, being replaced with a vivid red, as if blood had been introduced to the source of the essence. The radiance was still there, but this was no longer the color of the Unconquered Sun, it was the light of war. And rising from the halo was the the form of a bird, the Phoenix Born of Blood, Mnemia’s and Raxin’s totem.
Her anima banner fully exposed Mnemia’s body began to slowly lift into the air, her eyes still open but the rest of her body motionless. Once she had reached a height of almost 5 meters she slowly brought her arms up, her fingers passing through the red light that still poured from her halo. As her arms became perpendicular to the ground she brought them forward. And as they left the essence of the halo behind they still glowed a bright crimson. Closing her hands into fists she extended her index fingers and began tracing symbols in the air, each arm working independent of the other. The motions were deliberate and different every time. It wasn’t runes of power or the words of a spell she scribed. Instead, infused as she was with her own essence, she was tracing the local ley lines, mapping the boundaries and channels of power to be used by the Impending Dawn Band to call forth Harbinger.
The markings complete she was motionless again for a few seconds before her arms shot up into the air, her gaze rising to look upon the sun in the sky. At the apex of the motion golden red radiance peeled off of the halo, snaking towards and then wrapping around her wrists before merging with the red light still encasing her hands. Pulling her arms apart she held them straight out to her sides again, letting the essence of the halo flow through her fingers again.
Holding this position the energy of the anima began to shift, flowing down her arms and along the contours of her body. As it did bands similar to those that encased her wrists began to to form at her elbow, shoulder and neck. Still the radiance continued to flow, wrapping around her waist, knees, ankles and feet a moment later. The contact points established Mnemia dropped her arms to her sides again, the lingering essence evaporating from her body.
Still floating in the air she reached forward, her hands moving up to cup the center of the scarlet map still etched in front of her. This part of the symbol was always the same, the partial halo that represented her. All that was left was to make the final connection, finish the path. Putting her fingers into the symbol on both sides she pulled her hands apart. As she did her own anima banner flared, growing in radius to match the proxy Mnemia was manipulating. And as the halo reached the first of the ley lines…
The connection between Creation and Elsewhere was a metaphyiscal one. They are bound through dimensions even an exalted may have difficulty comprehending, let alone visualizing. It makes understanding exactly how something crosses the barrier between them a concept the mind has trouble holding on to, especially when the process takes several minutes. Everyone sees something different. Mnemia sees it as a great object pressing through a fluid film, an obstacle that gets thinner and thinner under it can no longer hold Harbinger from this world. But she has learned that Kadon and Zuko both see something entirely different. It’s as much about the viewer’s perspective as it is about the physical truth.
Within the cockpit of the warstrider Mnemia’s feet finally touch down, though in controlling the massive machine she still moves in ways not entirely natural. Around her the now solid sphere begins to come to life, the world in all directions mapped to the inner surface before artificial displays snap to life, providing the means to understand and access all of Harbinger’s systems. Finally, Anna materializes in front of Mnemia before stepping off to the side, her display seeming to be part of the outside world.
“Welcome back.” she says, always with a smile.