2020-04-20 - It's All In Spirit


BACKDATED SCENE: Sigyn wishes away Kali's curse and Hathis-Ur comes to visit. Sort of.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Mon Apr 20 02:04:07 2020
Location: Patna

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Undertaking to use a wishing stone, no matter what the provenance, is not something to be done lightly. On the other hand, one can only sit on a mad death goddess for so long and infectious insanities are not something to be left to themselves lightly either. So with all that taken into account the time has finally come to do some serious wishing. There is a city to cure, a goddess to cleanse and fates only know what else that will need doing.

The tool for all this is of course the wishing gem that Ambrose and Astryd had liberated from a local temple and the focal point is Sigyn, the only goddess conveniently available who is pure enough to use it without serious backlash. Or at least that is the case.

However one does not simply wish things away and hope for the best. So, while Kali is naturally present if heavily tied up and gagged, Loki is as well and Fenris and Astryd are arriving juuuuuust in case.

If everything goes will this will be quite boring. A couple of wishes and that's it. But everything might not, which is why they're in a warehouse at the edge of the city. Something that can be leveled without too much collateral damage if need be.

Fenris has brought poke. They made a stop in Hawaii along the way. Nom. He's just waiting for Sigyn to finish her preparations and for Loki to finish fussing. "More taco poke, Astryd?"

Astryd is looking rather … islander … at the moment. Dressed in bright colours with her blonde hair braided just so. She might have *also* bought Fenris an Aloha shirt on their stop over - he *hates* those thing but she buys them anyway.

"Yes please, my heart." The Valkyrie answers, taking some of the delicious food for herself. "How are things progressing here?" That's to Loki and Sigyn. Both might notice how pale the Valkyr is.

Sigyn has written the wish out in Asgardian, then in Suddh Hindi, and after doublechecking the translation, she has Loki check before she checks it again. She isn't merely asking for the madness to be cured, she is asking for it to be /unmade/, so that it cannot be invoked again or inflicted on anyone else. "I am ready as I am likely to ever be." She gives Loki a wan smile, she takes this rather seriously, and if there /is/ a backlash, she accepts that it will fall on her, not another.

Loki does not *fuss*, Loki was 'expressing justifiable and ultra reasonable, even sensible, concern', thank you very much. He lurks while Sigyn prepares, studying the bound Kali if he can, not maliciously of course, he's just not often had a chance to do such. Eyes of glacier-heart green soon turn to his Son, and his son's Raven. "I liked seeing Maui again, seemed not nearly as dense and annoying as I thought the first few times, maybe I'm growing up."

Yeah, Loki, maturing. That's so likely.

When Sigyn emerges, he checks over the translation, perhaps offering a tweak in the wording here and there. A kiss to her brow. "You'll do well, Faithful one."

He /does/, with a hint of a smirk hoping the teasing will help her relax, visibly edge a few steps away, as if seeking for cover.

Also, ooh…taco poke.

"Whenever you're ready, Sigyn. We'll be standing by." Fenris says as he quietly passes more food to Astryd. She did get him an aloha shirt, he isn't wearing it. Loud shirts are loud. They seem more like Loki's thing if anyone asked his opinion, which they did not.

When Sigyn is ready the gem begins to pulse with light. Power spills out of it as she makes her wish. It feels like a fresh running river, like a rainstorm after a fire, like rubbing alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. Cleansing. Cool.

Kali does not at all like it. She starts to thrash and power within her seems to lash out at the energy unleashed by the wishing gem but, as Sigyn had asked, slowly that power is unmade. Slowly it seeps into the goddess and spreads through the city.

And just like that the magic is gone. Something done correctly that had gone out without a hitch. And so of course it couldn't be that simple.

Kali SCREAMS and ethereal threads begin to appear in the air around her. Fate threads. She's tied up. Literally tangled and almost completely wrapped in them. Her eyes open wide now and she pants, grunting in pain. Yes the madness is gone. But that was not the only thing around her that had been manipulated. She says something in a language that no one present understands. And given that everyone present is Asgardian, that's a very serious thing.

"Where… what…" She says moments later. "No… no!" She cries out again and speaks in that undecipherable language. "I… augh! Who is there? Friend or foe?! I sense death and life. I sense destruction and lies." Pause. "And… poke?"

Astryd shares the poke with Loki quietly, watching Sigyn. This isn't something she'd wish on anyone. The shirt wasn't all that loud but it did have some pinks in it, Fenris will wear it - at least once.

"Well that's refreshing … " comes the murmur as the effects of the spell are fel. "And that's not …" She refers to Kali's thrashing and the energy about her. She doesn't draw her sword of move towards the bound goddess yet - magic is a tricky thing, she knows that.

"That can't be good … those are threads of FATE. Damn your son, Fenris." Gurim-Ur does *not* have favour with Astryd at all. "We are friends, Lady Kali. Well, we aren't foes, at any rate. I am Astryd, Raven of Fenris and the poke is quite good. Would you like some?"

Sigyn approaches Kali, circling her slowly, studying things with care. "I am Sigyn. We were able to lift your madness, but this will be trickier. We dare not sever a single thread." She turns to Loki, smiling at him sweetly, "Love, would you mind fetching my handiwork basket? The one of willow, that I left beside the fireplace?" She sits down next to Kali muttering something under her breath about never escaping the domestic goddess jokes after tonight…

"Mmm? Oh…nice shirt…the wishing? Tricky, but I think Sigyn has done well." Loki answers both Fenris' thoughts about the shirt and Astryd's question…belatedly, and the Poke is good too. Loki is also very pleasantly surprised that the wish worked as intended. "Well, there…" And then things go south, the fate threads appear. Smile fading, he watches the thrashing. "I will never eat Garam Masala again." He murmurs, and then moves to his wife's side. "We're none of us your enemies, Kali. I don't think I've even ever pranked you."

When asked to fetch the basket, Loki goes very still a moment, but…Sigyn literally can't world walk like he can, and so he nods once. "Of course." He inclines his head to all assembled and travels home, and then finds the handiwork basket asked for and returns moments later.

"I believe this is what you wanted, my dear?"

Fenris stands up and begins tracing the fate threads. Most of them naturally go off into the ether, connected to a long list of things that are elsewhere. However there are a couple linking her and Fenris and her and Astryd. That makes sense since the two have been opposed very recently. They're thin threads though and sure to fade with time if the trio doesn't have anything further to do with one another.

One, though, and quite a thick one, links Kali and Sigyn. Which also makes sense. Ties of causality would be quite strong between the two right now. Several of them are also black. And… quite cold.

"Well this isn't good-" Fenris starts when MORE things happen. Smoke appears behind Astryd and the ghostly image of a large, silvery wolf appears. One that Astryd has seen before though Loki has not. Hathis-Ur. The Silver Wolf.

"Well well." The projection says. "So that's why Kali suddenly went dark. And who have we here? A liar, his wife, a birb and… hello Father."

Fenris growls slightly. "Hathis. Why don't you come here in person and we can discuss a few things."

"I'm afraid I'll have to pass. I just thought I'd peek in on you, maybe let you know that the Birb and the Liar might be regretting this later."

Some of this is SURELY an attempt to distract Sigyn. Or prod Kali who does thrash a bit again and moan something in that cthonic tongue.

"I wonder what she's saying…" The silver wolf taunts.

Astryd is used to the threads of Fate that bind her to others. She's a Valkyrie and as many journeys end, she's there to guide them the last little way.

When the projection begins the blond undoes her hair pin, not transforming it to the sword and shield just yet. "Ah. Hathis-Ur. Remind me to buy you and your sibs a thesaurus for your birthdays - you all seem to lack an extensive vocabulary." She *hates* being called a birb and they all do it.

"I'm sure you don't wonder what the goddess is saying. I'm sure you know." Regret it later? Maybe. "Do you have a message from your brother, Hathis-Ur?" The implication is heavy - that's all he is. Gurim-Urs messenger.

Sigyn ignores the silver wolf. Really, as taunting goes it's strictly second rate… Listening to the gossips at court sharpen their tongues on speculation about her marriage bed with Loki has given Sigyn thick skin. She removes from the basket a spindle that glows like moonlight and is as translucent as glass, along with several long thin picks and hooks, some of which shimmer, some of which absorb light. She sings softly under her breath as she begins to unwind the threads, teasing them apart from each other and out of their knots, working slowly and carefully to free Kali and never once touching the threads with anything but her tools.

It's a very domestic kind of magic, a very patient one. Sigyn takes her time, trusting the others to guard her back. If they had thrown modern science or tech at her she would have been lost, but weaving? Untangling threads? This falls right in her skill set. Its the weight and strength of the threads, the power in them that poses the risk. Fate, after all, brings mortals and gods alike to their knees. It takes more than mortal tools and greater than mortal patience and skill to unsnare things from fate.

"Another of your get, Son?" Loki asks of Fenris as he gives Sigyn her handiwork basket. Loki makes not of the name for the silver wolf projecting to the room. Loki walks over to the projection, studying it, pacing about it widdershins as he does so. "Not too bad for amateur work." Loki decides, and then walks through the projection to stand with his Son, his wife and Astryd by the writhing Goddess of Death.

"Oh no, I've been threatened. That hardly ever happens! Lady Astryd, do you think I should faint, swoon or grovel?" A pause as she mentions a Thesaurus. "See, now you're presuming that they're literate, Lady. That's presumptuous even for me."

He can't help but grin at her taunting of the projection as a mere errand boy.

He is also pondering if he has any translation spells that might work, divining the past is easier by far than the future, and if he can get the words written down and then use such a spell…yes, it might work.

As Sigyn starts her working, Loki invokes his Seidr, setting up wardings to protect the beings present physically, and only those from any backlash. He invokes the full power of one of his nine daily spells in this casting, the full might of Loki channeled into shimmering wards of guards.

Slowly, but surely, Sigyn begins to work the threads off Kali. This is made difficult by the fact that each of them is a mystical tensioned steel cable, capable of snapping at any time and inflicting horrible if very esoteric harm with it's flailing and the power contained therein. It is also made difficult by the fact that Kali keeps thrashing and crying out and does so increasingly as Sigyn's work progresses. Worse, the language that she's using is starting to make… a little bit of sense to Sigyn and every time she has to work with one of those cold black threads, it makes a little MORE sense. Not enough to put any of the utterances into words, but enough to start to get the ideas behind them.

Ideas of creeping things and places that are not meant to be and creatures for whom the very notion of existence is a contradiction in terms. Beings that do not and cannot exist… but are nonetheless. And through it all she gets one concept over and over. Bane. Bane. Bane. Spoken like an invocation or a curse or a name. Bane. Whatever it is, it is vital to these things that cannot be.

"Another one of mine." Fenris says, watching as Hathis chuckles, pacing first one way and then the other to get a more complete look at the room.

"Threatened? No, Liar. Why should I need to threaten you. I would have to work, then, to make it come true and I have better things to do. No this is a more entertaining kind of thing. I simply get to warn you. To tell you of the consequences of your actions. Not that you've ever particularly heeded those have you, Loki? It never matters to you what others pay for what you have done. And oh the things you have done…" Hathis smiles unpleasantly. "So perhaps I was wrong. Perhaps you will not regret what comes." There's a short pause. "Do you love your wife?"

Leaving that hanging in the air Hathis glares at Astryd. "A message from Gurim? I think you have received one already. He wishes to talk, the mewling little thing. No, what he does with you is of no moment to me so long as he does what he has said he would. But if it helps I know why he wishes to talk to you. Well… one reason why."

The wolf waves a paw and an image appears wrapped around Astryd's shoulders and torso. A horrible, lumpen, mishappen thing that is at once both leaching from her with a fang filled remora like mouth and whispering in her ears. "You've been… not yourself of late, haven't you. Wondered why that is? Dear old dad not quite up to putting you right?"

"Well, Loki, I believe that Fenris would have taught his children. So, they must be literate but only so far, don't you think? Perhaps they weren't all that teachable." The glare she receives gets the *sweetest* of smiles. "Oh, I see. You're worried you brother has more balls than you do and now you're trying to prove who's the Alpha wolf." She's prodding, deliberately. Angry is dangerous but angry is also incautious. Ahem, something that Astryd would know a little about.

"Oh, you meant the invitation we got to have tea with him the other day? I'm not sure he can make a decent one, so I'm considering not accepting."

When the image appears, the Valkyr tenses a moment - stormy grey eyes meeting Fenris'.

"Another petty parlour trick, Hathis-Ur? You should have stayed by your Fathers side if you wanted to be more than just a clown."

Sigyn begins to focus on those dark threads. It's tempting to gather them all together, but… no, each to it's own spool of starlight and purity, though she doubts after touching -those- threads she will dare reuse those spools again. Softly she whispers to Kali, "Let me help you, let me free you from them… you don't belong to -them- you belong to -this- world, to it's dance… let me free you to work with us against those outsiders."

Yes, thread working - that is a very domestic sort of thing that a goddess of Hearth and Home will excel at, but Loki is a god with a very different set of skills. His is magic of fire and ice, of illusion, of transformations…but his greatest magics have always been with trickery and with lies. Lies like what are being whispered into Astryd's ear, trickery like the hidden thing feeding off her as it lies — his power, his /keystone/ powers invoked two-fold.

Oh, and he's one of the most powerful and skilled Magi in the Nine Realms. Deftly that skill, that power is proven as he looks to Fenris. Eyes burning bright with all the colors of the Bifrost and more. "Here, Son…I need you to hold this for a few moments, if you please." The Wards are shifted…bound to Fenris, Fenris is no caster but /oh/ the power of THE Wolf.

Laevateinn is drawn then, and the Liesmith, the Trickster incants another great working, the fire of the blade going stark white, and painful for the eye to behold. "You know, there is much that can be learned if one can take the form, truly become, anything." He looks to the Silver Wolf. "Do I love my wife? Do you even know what love is, fould brute? Chortle in thrall to your misshapen masters, consequences are what they will be." And then he turns to the Raven. Seeking her gaze. "Be strong." He exhorts, and stabs the at the thing clinging to her like a fusion of leech and mold, the spell cast into the teeth of the voice. "This spell is called 'Light of Purity' by the Lios Alfar, it is a banishment…a spell I have yet to find a way to improve upon."

Even Loki staggers upon casting that spell, indeed, his many transgressions weigh heavily - though his intent /here/ is pure, his cause /now/ is just, and so instead of being killed or sent to Jotunheim, or both, he is merely BURNT.


What will it do to the shadow?

"That's no trick." Hathis and Fenris say at the same time. The Old Wolf glowers at Hathis. "You put an Maeljin on my Raven why exactly? And you expect to survive this?"

"Me? I've done no such thing." Hathis smiles. "Your Raven took a spell meant for another and it unbalanced her. And what do the Maeljin crave?" Strong, negative emotions. Things like arrogance, violence, recklessness. "It latched onto her like a starving beast onto food and well… She's been very good about feeding it."

Fenris looks to Astryd but before he can say anything Loki is acting. "Why does that sound like 'Hold my ale…?" Fenris mutters mostly to himself but certainly loudly enough for everyone else to hear.

The spell costs Loki and Astryd will feel its effects as well. It strikes the spirit and begins to burn it. Even though it is discorporate Loki and Astryd can both SMELL it charring. And then it lashes out. Loki may be one of the most powerful sorcerers of this realm but there are things more ancient than he. It lashes out, magic of a cthonic and primal sort - belonging to spirits that existed long before man or god - and begins to draw on Loki for the power needed to heal and defend itself. It's not siphoning his magic though. Oh no. It's feeding on his pride. His ego. And on the memory of a hundred thousand slights both to him and his loved ones.

Astryd feels a sudden surge in that recklessness. The creature is drawing on her as well. STRONGLY. And it has been doing so for so long that it isn't hard for it to do that.

"It doesn't really matter what I know of love." Hathis smirks. And as he does so Sigyn gets to the last of those dark threads. She's nearly got Kali free but as she is disconnecting the last one the death goddess' eyes go black and she sits up abruptly, breaking the bonds she'd been held in and reaching for Sigyn's hand. On her palm is a glowing red sigil that even from a distance feels hot enough to brand divine flesh. And while only Sigyn will know what it says, that knowledge will be no comfort.


Astryd rolls her eyes at the two wolves. Of course it isn't a trick but Fenris at least could have played along with her. She's actually rather scared but she knows better than to show it plus, you know, reckless. "Because he just asked you to hold it…"

She would tell Loki 'no' but it's too late - and yes, Hathis is well right that they're both going to regret this.

As the spell burns, Astryd screams - that spirit is connected to her and she's getting the effects on it. And then it's drawing on her will, forcing her to reckless - the hair pin and basket transform to her weapons and before anyone knows what is happening, she's charging the apparition.

Sigyn did not want to be wearing any weapons when working with the wishing stone, so she had left her sword at home but given Loki Hjemmebund, the dagger she can always call to her hand. So even as Loki screams in pain from his casting, she is leaping back, calling the dagger to her hand. And if Kali is between her and her husband.. oops. Too bad the impact would be from the pommel nut not the blade. Once armed, Sigyn will focus on /not/ being branded. That is her first priority. She hisses at Kali in hindi, "You don't belong to /them/. You don't belong with /them/. You belong with Shiva. Your /husband/." Trust Sigyn to go for spousal guilt. And as goddess of fidelity she'll do what she can verbally and magically to yank HARD on those bonds! She might be nearly as good at fighting with daggers as her husband, but her enemies don't normally have so many hands!

… though would Kali miss one if she cut the hand off with that brand? Not likely she'll get the opening, but the thought /does/ cross Sigyn's mind.

Rage. Hurt pride. All the myriads of slights Loki's lived — his birth parents rejection, his adopted father's neglect, the spite of his brothers, his spite to them, never measuring up…all these things surge in his blood. Hurt pride, the thrill of tricking someone and making THEM feel foolish, petty spite, wrongs real and imagined…all these things surge in him, the memory of them.

In a brief moment of clarity, he thinks 'Love'.

The Silver Wolf asked him of love. All he is feeling is the dark thoughts. What it…

A surge of recklessness from Astryd as she leaps to attack the projection, and Loki's own recklessness, not inconsiderable in its own right is fanned from burning flame to conflagration.

Drawing on all his remaining Seidr, the last seven of his workings are woven into a tempest, channeled through channels in his mind and soul burnt as raw as his outside by the effort.

"Parasite…love thyself." A love spell. He fights the emotional leech with…a love spell amplified seven fold.

It is an inspired choice, throwing love at the creature. If it only feeds off of negative emotion, let it choke on positive. There is just one slight complication. If it is old enough, cthonic enough, inhuman enough, that it doesn't have any actual conception of what love is; if it is alien enough that anthrocentric concepts are just so much noise to it, then… what exactly does telling it to love itself do?

Well not choke. It still CLEARLY doesn't like the energy and that's enough that when Astryd charges it, it bats her away with a long ghostly tentacle and throws some rage her way. Or rather draws on it. Her anger at Odin. Her most potent rage. And then with a feeling that almost feels like a 'harrumph' it phases out. It hasn't actually GONE anywhere. It's still ethereally wrapped around Astryd, but it has phased so that it can neither be effected by these pesky fleshy beings, nor affect them in turn. So the surges of pride and rage stop. Though they probably linger, since they're not just magical conjurings but based in Loki and Astryd's own psyche's.

Fenris, meanwhile, intervenes with Sigyn briefly distracting Kali long enough for Sigyn to solidly get her love and loyalty tugged on. And just like that the many handed goddess collapses. She's cleansed and conscious just… exhausted. The energy in the brand on her hand rises up in a swirl of motes and flows away, mostly out of the building.

Mostly. Some of it goes right through the back of Loki's neck and… well.

There's a very good chance that he gets the mark instead.

Hathis just laughs. "Well. You're all very entertaining. But I have better things to do. Enjoy your victory here. And remember… whatever comes next - you did it to yourselves."

And then he's gone, leaving Sigyn, Loki, Fenris and Astryd alone with a cleansed goddess in a cleansed city.

Astryd doesn't get angry - she gets even. Well, she doesn't get angry … often. When she does though, it's something to behold. Batted away, the blonde impacts into a wall, causing the plaster to crack and flake. Growling, the steely eyed Valkyrie picks herself up and starts to attack …. just as the creature phases out.

The drive is less, but the anger is still there. With a frustrated yowl, the blonde punches the wall and storms out into the cleansed city. The others can hear her mutter as she does "When I find you Hathis-Ur, I'm going to skin you…"

Cranky Valkyrie is Cranky.

Sigyn murmurs, "Remind her that turning him into a cloak would be in bad taste." Cautiously she approaches her husband. "Loki?" She saw the energies leave… and some didn't. If he starts talking in that unknown language, she doesn't know what she'll do. (Probably finally get the nerve up to hunt down Hades and Persephone, and ask them if the texts calling them Cthonic deities who snuck into the greek and roman pantheons are correct… but it would take Loki being possessed to make her do that. Asking such a question is worse than just dangerous… it's RUDE.)

Aching inside and out, burnt, throbbing with the aftermath of his long lifetime of hubris and deceit, Loke falls to hands and knees when the creature is only — discomfited. Panting for ragged breath after hoarse and wet sounding ragged breath, his pride is the only thing keeping him even that much upright.

"Story of my life." He rasps to the departing Silver Wolf.

Loki's not wrong.

Trembling, he reaches up to touch his neck, feeling /something/ there, he knows not what. Flesh seared, cracked, leaking lymph and charred from hand to elbow, he turns his gaze to his wife as Astryd storms out into the night. "It is I." He thinks. Mostly? Right now he's just weary, in agony, and frustrated beyond measure.

Fenris sighs and nods to Sigyn. "I'd better go make sure she doesn't upend a train station or something." He leaves the building and the other two can hear him shouting. "ASTRYD! RAVEN PUT THAT DOWN!!!!"

Though it gets further away by the second.

That leaves just Loki and Sigyn. Well, and Kali but she isn't going anywhere right now. So functionally, just Loki and Sigyn, breathless and exerted with the latter staring at a mark on the back of her beloved's neck. A mark that only she can read.

A mark that says 'Bane.'

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