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Aug 12, 2020 8:34 PM
members of two migrant fleets meet in the void between galaxies
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The woman tilts her head to the side, her eyes beginning to lightly glow with indigo light.

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"Mayor Saffron?" The Commander asks, the meaning of her words coming across perfectly clearly despite still sounding foreign. "It's good to speak face-to-face. These are Second Lieutenant Xan" she motions to the young man, "Robin Chiswick, Mist Guardian to Captain Ariana of the Black Lily," the woman, "And Lieutenant Arthur Randyll, my own Mist Officer," the older man. She eyes the daémons with some interest, but doesn't stare. 

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This one does, though, watching the larger daémons out of the corner of his eye. 

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They each return the bow, with varying degrees of skill.  "Yes, I'm Mayor Saffron and Oririserv," he greets, motioning to the clefairy riding on his shoulder, half hiding behind his head.  

"With me are the Legendary Verity-and-Araeneve, Alizara-and-Salanaya, and Azure-and-Florentho."  

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The one with the gallade, Azure, steps out right next to the mayor.  His outfit looks messy, but in the same deliberate and fashionable sense as his 'windswept' hair, evoking the concept of worn while being brand new and perfectly clean. 

The gallade is hanging back but never getting more than a few feet from his person.  Florentho speaks in their minds, offering "I'm a psychic-type, and can step in for translation if you run out of stamina."  Knowing that Salanaya won't, he adds, "The metang is also psychic."

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The metang's human looks remarkably similar to Azure, only with longer hair and feminine features.  She has a somewhat forced smile and is clearly feeling awkward about being part of the welcome party with her twin.  Metang Salanaya indeed fails to comment. 

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Farthest back, Verity is both annoyed at this whole predicament and with being invited just because of her daémon's shape.  She watches Xan back.  

Araeneve is pacing nervously, ready to drag his person away if this turns dangerous.

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Slightly amused smile, "My capacity is among the best in the fleet, but I appreciate the offer," she says.

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"We can figure out a system for trading off on translation duty if we have more meetings that need it," Arthur puts in, shrugging. 

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(Xan catches her watching and locks eyes, his own briefly gaining a red tint before he blinks it away. He nods.)

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That is unnerving.  What did that nod mean?  Did he use some kind of magic, or are red eyes just another kind of gesture for people who can do that?  She frets, and also scoots closer to Alizara, then goes back to eyeing him warily, and glancing around at the other daémonless people.  

Araeneve moves closer to his person, standing on the opposite side from Alizara.  The back rank of the welcome party is now in a line.

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"It's convenient not needing to worry about translation thanks to Floren, but I'm not attached to the idea of spending my time translating for others," Azure says.

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"Perhaps now that we're able to communicate clearly, we can exchange information?"

There are a lot of things to talk about, and he's not sure where to start.  The beginning sounds logical.

"Our fleet originally came from a pocket universe, about 3 light-seconds across and running under different physics than this one. It was reaching the end of its life cycle, but the Legendaries of that time were able to keep it together long enough for us to build a series of large ships.  Four Grand Ships, and several smaller towns such as Aureolin Marsh.  We were then sent through a hole between dimensions, and have spent the last 200 years travelling through interstellar space towards the likeliest planet for terraforming they were able to find."

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Well, now he knows she's not hostile, so he can mostly ignore her.

(It's strange to interact with people who don't know what it means when an active lets their eyes glow visibly instead of channeling any excess flame to their core - a polite way of telling the surrounding people that they're using flames for something internal.)

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"I'm perfectly happy to keep translating," Robin assures him, before turning her attention to the Mayor.  

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How interesting! They might be able to create a pocket dimension that large with their abilities and resources, if they stopped and focused on that alone for some time, but if these people know nothing about Flames it must have been done some other way. Something about 'Legendaries', perhaps - they wonder if Verity-and-Araeneve is (are?) one of these, or if the 'Legendary' descriptor meant something else in their case. 

"As far as we know this is our original universe," G offers in return, "We come from Earth - a planet within the second-nearest galaxy to our current position, which we call the Milky Way. Its relatively recent destruction was a long-delayed consequence of an experiment performed tens of thousands of years ago by a small group of Flame scientists belonging to a species which have since been wiped out, aside from their part-human descendants among our people. This was roughly 300 years ago. We have been traveling towards Andromeda - the nearest galaxy to our current position - ever since, on the prophetic advice of the Giglio Nero Oracle of the time. The Titan Fleet consists of three large City ships and fourteen smaller ones - the Sparrow shuttle we arrived on belongs to the Black Lily, which is one of the larger ships." 

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"Do you know what you're expected to find in Andromeda?"

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"No - Cielo Giglio Nero's sight was not clear on the matter. He only knew that our people would find the greatest success if we took that path, and that our own galaxy was filled with great danger." Or, at least, that was all he told the Admiral of the time. 

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"Our foresight is either unreliable or vague past a certain point.  I'm not aware of any large prophecies we're being led by..."  he turns to look at Verity quizzically.  "Though I'm not an expert on theology.  Perhaps you have insight into the matter?"

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She sighs.  "Theology is a waste of time.  Some small percentage of people get rare and unusually powerful daémons, and people think they're reincarnated from the first legendaries to lead them, even though we have no proof of reincarnation being a thing for anyone as far as I've seen.  And other various annoying things.  I doubt any prophecies the church has are any more accurate than the rest of what they say."

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"Giglio Nero have the gift of prophecy - their accuracy has been proven extensively over the past few centuries."

She pauses.

"We don't have proof that reincarnation exists," she adds slowly, cautious about the topic of 'Theology', "But we do have strong suspicions. Recurring patterns, particularly obvious in the personalities within natural Flame sets - a set being a group made up of usually one person of each Flame type, tied together through Flame bonds. We do know that our souls return to the ship souls when we die - and given that your ship has one, it stands to reason that yours do as well." 

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She glances at Verity in confusion.  Alizara never kept track of religion or found it especially plausible, either, but a legendary openly speaking against it is very strange.

"'Ship souls?'" Alizara asks, trying to work through the unfamiliar concepts.  "Do you mean that our ship has a daémon - or a soulfire?"

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"Hm - any place which contains a large enough concentration of sentient souls over a long enough period of time will gain something of a soul of its own. It is not quite alive as we know it, however. More... a conglomerate of all the excess soul energy of all those beings tied to it." Planet-derived ship souls are different, of course, but those differences aren't relevant at the moment. "They make for a good frame to tie down Flame techniques and technology which need to be lasting."

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"The church has guesses about where souls go when the daémons vanish after a person dies, but nothing with evidence," Alizara says, picking her words carefully.  "Daémons have weight and are clearly solid when alive, but don't leave bodies," she adds, in case that wasn't clear.  

"We'd probably need to check records to see if there are any suspicious similarities between people of different generations.  I don't think anyone's tried looking for reincarnation in non-Legendaries.  As for those... out of about a million people in the fleet there are usually only 10 or so Legends at a time, out of the 68 Legendary forms.  They haven't been repeating in any patterns that I've been aware of, though I'm not caught up on their teachings either."

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"There aren't any patterns," Verity confirms.  "There were two celebi in our history since the fleet started, but they didn't sound like the same person.  No more than two of any other daémon form do."

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