Nov 28, 2020 5:48 AM
slayer karen lands on the avatarverse and runs into zuko!serg
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"OK. That sounds great! It - doesn't have any side effects or anything?"

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"What's a side effect?"

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"Um, a side effect is something that happens as a result of doing something else, but isn't the specific thing you meant to do. Like, if the thing you meant to do was let me understand everyone's languages, and then it also made me forget my name or turn blue or something, that'd be a side effect. Where I come from magic pretty commonly has weird side effects."

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"Oh," says the spirit. "No. Weird bad things happen when a spirit shares all of themselves with a human, but it's fine if it's just one thing, and not very much of a spirit."

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"Oh." She frowns. This is a terrible idea probably. She should probably not randomly merge with weird spirits she found in forests in other dimensions.

Her stomach rumbles.

"Yeah, OK. Let's do it."

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"Okay!"

The spirit does another little loop, rustling the leaves vigorously, and the tiny mote of light lands on her nose. There's a feeling sort of like a jolt of static electricity, and also not very much like that at all, and then nothing seems very different afterward, but when she hears the spirit's voice it's now on the inside of her head.

You can try talking to that person over there who's staring at you! it suggests. Oh, never mind, they went away.

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(Aw. She misses Alex maybe two percent less.)

"Who? Where?"

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I don't know, I only saw them right before I shared with you. They were over to the east of us, where there's more trees.

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"Mmm."

She hops down out of the tree and frowns at the spot where she landed.

"Can you find this place again, if we leave it to look for a village?"

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Yes! Probably. I think. I could find it on my own but I don't know how to navigate for a human and it's probably much more complicated since you're so slow and you can't fly and stuff.

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"Oh. Well, remember it, OK? And maybe check over here every now and then, if it's no trouble for you. 'Cause someone else could come looking for me, and if that happens we wanna make sure we know right away."

She carves a K into her tree, just to make sure that if she does make it back here she'll be able to know she's back.

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I'll remember! it promises. And I might come back and check. But I don't know if I'd be able to find you again, and I want you to be able to talk to people!

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"Makes sense. Speaking of talking to people - "

She kneels in front of Wishbone. "How you holding up?"

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He whines.

The magic interprets this as: I've had about enough magic for this week. And I want to go home. And I want you to carry me to civilization while I continue whining about various aspects of our present situation, assuming civilization is even a thing that can be found here.

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"That's rough, buddy."

She scoops him up. 

"All right. Um - glimmer thing - can I call you Glimmer? I think people're mostly easier to interact with if they have names - d'you know which way we walk to get to something resembling civilization?"

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I guess you can call me that if you want. I'm not really familiar with this area... maybe try going east?

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"I have absolutely no idea which way east is."

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Oh. It's the direction with more trees and sun.

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"Cool. Thanks, Glimmer."

She'll just walk east then. And try not to think too much about whether leaving her current spot is making it impossible for Alex to find her later.

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There are more trees, and then there are less trees, and then there's a little ravine, and then there is a medium amount of trees, and then there is a village. By this point the sun is high overhead.

The village seems quiet. There's a small child playing in front of a house, but when she sees Karen she drops the smooth stone she's been rolling back and forth between her hands and darts inside.

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Sigh.

Does it have anything resembling a shop where one might buy something to eat?

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Well, not obviously. There are buildings but not enough signage to distinguish houses from shops if indeed any of them are shops.

When she's been peering around for a minute or so, an old woman with a cane emerges from one of the buildings and makes her way slowly toward Karen.

"Hello," she says, in a completely foreign language which Karen nevertheless understands perfectly. "You look lost."

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"Yep! Got separated from my friends in the woods back there, and now I'm super turned around. I should probably try to find them, but first I'm pretty worried about, like, obtaining food and stuff."

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The experience of spirit-assisted speaking is weird, because she's still forming words in English the way she normally would, but she can also hear and feel herself articulating the same message in the strange language she doesn't actually know, and understand the meaning of the words just as well as she would if someone else were saying them.

"Hmm," says the old woman. "Those are interesting clothes you're wearing."

(She herself is dressed in a vaguely preindustrial-Asia sort of style, and all in drab shades of green and brown.)

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"Yeaaah," she says, glancing down at her own navy hoodie and jeans. "I'm not from around here."

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