Part 11Both you and Karen stare up the staircase from where a polite but firm knocking has come; you with surprise, since no one should be home, Karen with mischievous anticipation. The door opens, but there isn't a hard thump as it is stopped by the eye-bolt and hook locking mechanism you keep the door closed with when you are working. That's a good sign, it means it's someone who knows you...."Caitrin?" The relief you feel at your mother's voice is palpable, only to return when you realize that Karen is here and your parents have never met her (obviously). Since she appears to be thirty or more, it might bother your parents to see you hanging out with a much older women; they are fairly easy going but they do worry when they think someone is trying to take advantage of you."Hi mama! I'm working with chemicals down here. Do you need me to come unlock the door?" You glance at Karen, who is leaning on your work bench and favoring you with a lazy smile. Of course she wouldn't vanish the one time it might be convenient! Kiora is watching the strange shapeshifting woman like a hawk. A tiny hawk with a stickpin sword. And dragonfly wings."No honey, that's fine. I just stopped by to pick up something. If you want to order something to eat you can use my card though!" Karen shifts and the noise startles you. "You okay?" your mother calls, worried, as Kiora glances at you from the table."Just fine mama! I have a....a friend from school with me!""Hi Mrs. Foster! It's just me!" The hair on the back of your neck prickles and stands on end and you slowly turn to look at Karen, who is speaking with Lynnette's voice....and wearing Lynnette's body. And her clothing. From the volleyball jersey with the number 18 on it, to her white and black tennis shoes."Oh, hi Lynne! You're welcome to order too! And call me Caela, please!" Lynne almost always calls your mother Mrs. Foster. "Oh, if you're making incense, could you make me some more jasmine? Those were a hit at the office!""Sorry Mrs. Fos - uh, Caela!" Karen-Lynne grins wickedly at you and you tear your eyes away. If you didn't have Kiora's ability to see magic, you would not have been able to tell the difference. Except for that evil, knowing smile."That's....that's cool, mama. I'm not, but I'll make some extra on Saturday." You try hard to keep your voice steady."You sure you're all right baby? You sound kind of funny." Shit.  Go up and see her, let her see that everything is okay; it's obvious Karen has this covered. Just call out to let her know you're okay. It's the chemicals, that's why....Lynne....is here, right? Turn about is fair play, and you're curious - have Lynne go reassure your mother while you finish one anti-transformation potion.... Write in?
WHICH, CRAFT, WITCHXS !!6xEfm/rXmY7Twitter: @XsQuestmistressAskFM: https://ask.fm/XSQuestmistressPrevious thread: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/2510082/Character & Archived Threads: https://pastebin.com/EP5wUbjSSpellbook (in Progress): https://pastebin.com/q9WUkeBMArchive: https://pastebin.com/iCGEYi3hPeople of Note:Lynnette: The over-tall volleyball player and gal-pal, BFF, wing-gal, etc.Professor Tanner: Preternatural Biology Teacher.Mrs. Finch: Head librarian at Berkeley.Eddie: Rock hound and computer geek.Adele: A young woman who once needed Caitrin's help.Max: A werewolf with a problem.Belinda: Max's problem - a werewolf who might be enchanted.Rebecca: Hateful, stuck up, snobby bitch, Jack's sister.Christina: Rebecca's flunky, hates and fears Kiora.Valerie: One of Caitrin's friends, though she's usually trying to set her up on dates.Shelby: A rather nice young man, friendly with Caitrin and Lynne.Cam: Local and rather infamous artiste.Paul: Wants to be a member of the Preternatural Investigative Team with the police.Jack: Yummy would-be MMA star, potential dating material, Rebecca's brother.Evian: Aos Sí who works at Saks Fifth Avenue, potential contact.Cinnamon: A werewolf with a clue.Breanne: Leader of a tribe of fairies (demifey) in the Westfield Center Mall.Bettany: A minor psychic that shares preternatural biology class with Caitrin and Lynne.
>>2530907>[x] Just call out to let her know you're okay. It's the chemicals, that's why....Lynne....is here, right?Also messing with chemicals is distracting and we're trying to focus. A plausible excuse for sounding off, a touch of sounding exasperated with effort might help too. It wouldn't be all that fake.
>>2530907> Go up and see her, let her see that everything is okay; it's obvious Karen has this covered.Unfortunately I highly doubt that Karen would be flustered by pretending to be Lynne, and that wouldn't be fair to our mother.
>>2530925I just don't really want our mom to want to feel any reason to come downstairs.Also I'm unsure how we could say that without lying, though apparently we were able to manage>"Just fine mama! I have a....a friend from school with me!"without it counting, so that's not really a problem I guess
>>2530958If we set up a time to hang out later that might mollify her for the moment.
>>2530907> Just call out to let her know you're okay. It's the chemicals, that's why....Lynne....is here, right?
>>2530958>"Just fine mama! I have a....a friend from school with me!"Hm, even if Karen is a bit dubious, Kiora definitely counts as a friend, and even if we don't know her from school as is implied, I guess she could technically count as being "from school" as school was where we and Kiora were before coming here, thus what we said isn't actually a falsehood?
[X] Just call out to let her know you're okay. It's the chemicals, that's why....Lynne....is here, right?While saying Karen was a friend from school might have been a lie, there are two things that really bother you. One, her transformation into Lynne, as incredibly disturbing as it is (and you had no idea how disturbing it could be), makes it not a lie. the second, and much more worrisome thing is that Kiora didn't scold you when you started to lie. Which means Karen has been at school with you before. You didn't see her, or recognize her, but Kiora herself has, and the ability to see magic clearly differentiates Karen from anyone....anything else.Thinking of her as a stalker might have been a half-hearted joke before. Now it's taken on a disturbing reality."She's just keeping me company, making sure the fumes don't go to my head! I don't want to leave this, sorry!" Keeping Karen with you and away from your mother is certainly part of it. Kiora watches Karen, who still looks - and sounds - like Lynne."She's fine, Mrs- uh, Caela!" She looks at you and says just loud enough for your mother to possibly overhear, "I'm never going to get used to calling your mom by her first name, babe." Inflection, mannerism, everything is purely Lynne when she actually tries. It's unnerving and more than a little terrifying. "Okay! Yuo two be careful, okay?""We will!" you both call out simultaneously, but Karen bursts into soft laughter, while you barely manage a smile. she doesn't say 'jinx' because Lynne wouldn't have.The door shuts and you turn on Karen. Change back, tell her to change back right now! Splash her with one of your two transformation reversal potions. Ask her if she can actually eat pizza anyways. Write in?
>>2531004> Ask her if she can actually eat pizza anyways....Oh that explanation is much more unnerving than I initially had thought
>>2531004> Ask her if she can actually eat pizza anyways.
[X] Ask her if she can actually eat pizza anyways.You take deep, calming breaths as Lynne's expression breaks into that alien, mischievous smile that doesn't look like it belongs on her face. Knowing how much Karen enjoys scaring you makes you want to resist the fear even more, so you work at keeping your voice steady. "Can you even eat real food? Does pizza do anything at all for you?"Karen's voice coming from Lynne's mouth is one of the most disconcerting things you've ever experienced in your life, and when you have dealt with the sluagh, seen the sluagh, the scale for disturbing crap is bent beyond all recognition. "Eating? Yes. I can eat food. Digesting is another matter entirely." She runs a hand down her smooth belly, making the jersey ripple with her touch. The idea that this clothing is part of her body is almost too much to bear. "The organs and cellular structures are very much true to life, with a few additional additives in the cytoplasm, but nonfunctional. I force the heart to beat and the lungs to breathe, and peristalsis is time consuming and takes effort. Easier just to put it aside and ignore it until I can get rid of it in an easier way."With a swimming head, you murmur softly, "That's....that sounds disgusting." Something occurs to you. "Like an amoeba. You store the food in a vesicle and disgorge it later.""Just so," she agrees, smiling that unnerving, alien smile with your friend's lips. "I am surprised that Kiora told you I have been at your school."Kiora looks offended and gives Karen a hot glare. She's definitely not afraid of Karen!"She didn't." Not that you're going to tell her how you figured it out. Let her stew on that one. You glance at the potions and see the delicate mystical webbing that means the potions are complete. Well, the color has a lot more to do with it; it's that weird tarry green, where it looks brown or red when looked through, but greenish when like is directly falling upon it. Pulling the twigs and branches from the concoctions - the reddish ones the transformation from human to wolf, the brown from wolf to human - you stir them a little more, infusing them with more of your will, your faith, your power. "Stalking is a crime you know.""Surely you do not believe human laws apply to me, Caitrin." You glance at her and she's back, short dark hair, emerald eyes, pale skin without blemish or imperfection, yet just imperfect enough to be absolutely human. "Our kind cannot be considered under human jurisdiction for very good reasons. Nor any other form of law or binding contracts." Okay, that's fair, you're not like anything else....so what about your own kind? If you say so. Now, tell me about the Luminous Arc. Why not? I mean, you're part of the world, and you take human forms, what makes you different from the fae or the lycanthropes? Write in?
>>2531049> Okay, that's fair, you're not like anything else....so what about your own kind?
>>2531049> Why not? I mean, you're part of the world, and you take human forms, what makes you different from the fae or the lycanthropes?
>>2531049>[x] Why not? I mean, you're part of the world, and you take human forms, what makes you different from the fae or the lycanthropes?>You may not be mortal or biological and be able to brush aside consequences but you're still sapient, still a person. We can expect better of you.
>>2531061Hmm... Change the last bit to "You can be expected better of." Invites her to regulate her own behavior.
>>2531049>So you're saying that be it man or fae or god or devil, no rule -can- hold you? That's quite the privilege, I guess.
>>2531070Or is she saying that rules -shouldn't- hold her?
>>2531085She's the only one who can compel her to behave herself. And for that, she'd have to care what others think.
[X] Why not? I mean, you're part of the world, and you take human forms, what makes you different from the fae or the lycanthropes?[X] Write in? You may not be life as we know it, but you can be expected better of than that. Or are you saying no rule of mortal, fae, or deity can hold you? That's....something else.You take a set of four bottles, and lay them out in a row. Two are squarish and two are rounded, but each is only a five ounce bottle. Karen watches with great interest as you put a funnel in one of them, and lift the liter bottle filled with the transformation potion. "Why does the fact that you're not life as it's generally understood put you outside the laws of humans? Just because you're a supernatural being doesn't mean your people can't be part of the race. Even werewolves have rights in most places nowadays." You suspect you know why, but you want to hear her explanation."Would you give something that ate humans for food rights even if it were sapient? A thinking ghoul who could not survive on anything but the flesh of living humans, for example?" Kiora glances at you curiously, wondering where exactly you're trying to take this conversation."You don't eat humans, though, and you could probably restrict your diet to ghouls and other non-sapient monsters, couldn't you?" You pour the potion into the much smaller bottle, slowly, and you're kind of gratified to see Karen's surprise as you pour the entire liter of fluid into the five ounce bottle. As you start the next one, you glance at her. "You could hold yourself to a higher standard of conduct, couldn't you?""And if the matrices that are me deteriorate from a lack of sustenance, do you think that your kind could slay an unthinking yet high intelligence shapeshifting creature that defies several laws of physics just by existing?" You have to stop pouring, because the thought gives you pause. "When I said you could not kill me, I was not being facetious. Our own kind cannot meet one another - the stronger one suppresses the life and mind of the weaker, driving it into hibernation. We are solitary hunters by necessity, not by choice. And since we cannot communicate directly, it is very difficult to establish a line of communication at all, even with the wonders your people have created.""So, no rule or law can hold you back? Not mortal or immortal? You could become part of the fae, you know. They have monsters that eat people...." Kiora gives you a slightly disbelieving look, as if she's shocked you would suggest such a thing. "The sluagh have many beings like you.""An ogre may eat children by nature, but it is still capable of eating other things, and will not suffer from it," Kiora points out, and you really have to concede her point. Even the monsters are monsters by nature, and don't require the sacrifice of human life to survive.
"I am certain that given time and subject matter to study humankind can eventually come up with a way to contain or kill my kind. Certainly other species have tried, but Prometheus' gift runs strong in your kind. I am certain you will manage what others could not. Humans, for all their good intentions, are the most ruthlessly deadly species that has evolved in all of history. Even our kind cannot match up to yours in terms of killing intent." Karen leans on the table, watching you fill the final bottle with too much liquid. "We remain aloof because we wish to survive. Yet companionship is as important as food, to the healthy psyche. No, Caitrin, biological life cannot be given a hold over what we are, regardless of the seeming wisdom. There is nothing your kind can do to enforce your laws upon us, and I cannot risk the chance my mind might deteriorate without the nourishment I require."You glance at her and even smile a little. "Stalking isn't healthy.""And playing with imaginary creatures others cannot see is?" she counters, earning her another cutting glare from Kiora. Not the same, and you're hedging. Not that I blame you I suppose.... You win....you're beyond our understanding, but I'm used to it. Where will you want to meet tomorrow? You're a stand in for a God, Charon....are all your kind godlike beings? Somehow I doubt Danu was something like you. Write in?
>>2531134>x Not the same, and you're hedging. Not that I blame you I suppose....>You still desire companionship, friendship. For that, would you be willing to limit yourself? Hold to some kind of social norm for at least those you socialize with?
>>2531138I also want us to recognize that she is limiting herself in her interactions with us, but being less needlessly disturbing would be nice.
>>2531134Hm, part of me wonders whether we should specify that Karen shouldn't eat Cinnamon, or if it's best to just assume that Karen understands that due to how much she's stalking us/not really bring Cinnamon to Karen's attention allowing her to treat not eating her as a favor.
>>2531134> Not the same, and you're hedging. Not that I blame you I suppose....
>>2531134> You win....you're beyond our understanding, but I'm used to it. Where will you want to meet tomorrow?
>>2531143So does owe you a reward for finding out what she wanted you to call her.
>>2531150Maybe we should specify werewolves we're friends with or trying to be friends with. So, she also wouldn't eat the one we're trying to save but maybe if she attacks us.
>>2531134>>2531150In that case, then yeah>Call in that favor to make sure she's selective about her prey, at the very least Cinnamon is off the menu and general allies would be appreciated as well.I guess it's a good idea to hedge our bets.
[X] Not the same, and you're hedging. Not that I blame you I suppose....[X] Write in? You said I'd earned a gift....lets see if the God and Goddess do have some sway over you, and protect some people while I'm at it! And maybe stop fucking scaring me too.You take the small bottles and cover each one with a piece of lead foil, and then use a die-cut mold that's slightly larger than the cap should be to shape the foil into tight fitting caps that can easily be punctured with a knife or even a fingernail (even yours, despite having really soft nails). Karen watches, fascinated as a child might be. "Maybe....in the interests of friendship and companionship, you might adhere to some kind of societal norm? I really don't like it when you scare me.""Your fear is beautiful, Caitrin. If it makes you feel better, I will avoid doing so to other people you like, or who might have affections for you." Her eyes glitter wickedly in the poor lightning of the basement.Wait a minute.You stare at Karen, remembering something she said to Lynne. "You can....read people's emotions? Sense what they are feeling." She smiles as she rises from the bench and the stool, that bonelessly fluid movement that is incredibly machine-like despite being completely natural in all other respects. "Not just feel it....feed off of it, like Kiora does.""like sugar for your kind, it is largely without nutritional value, but the flavor of your fear across my mind and body is delicate and sharp, like something you would find tasty but difficult to eat often." Kiora looks mildly surprised as well. she moves closer and you take a step back, keeping some distance between you. She allows it - allows, because you know she is inhumanly fast. "I imagine your lust, your desires, Caitrin, would be like the richest of chocolates, and equally addictive."Your voice slips out, a tiny squeak. "....oh...." Your cheeks are burning up. "Please don't crowd me." Karen stops, and smiles at you, then takes a half step back. "I know what I want.""What you want?" she murmurs curiously."My reward for guessing your name." Her eyes light up and she grins viciously. "I want you to not eat anyone or anything I hold in esteem or respect, as long as they aren't any sort of threat to me." She looks surprised, which is gratifying. She probably expected you to ask her to stop being so....stalkerish. "I want you to promise that." The alien narrows her eyes and gazes at you suspiciously. Your heart is trip-hammering in your chest, and you suspect this is incredibly dangerous, but you control your mind, the fear that tastes so good to her now a trap."And if I do, you consider the gift given?" You nod quickly. she steps closer and your breath catches when your heart rate skyrockets. She smiles wickedly and reaches out, caressing your cheek. "I promise."
You feel the weight of the promise come down along your shoulders, ephemeral chains shining transparently in your faerie sight. Similar chains settle around Karen's shoulders, and she looks startled, feeling the magical forces binding you together and enforcing your promise. "....Magic. You bound the promise in a spell.""All promises are spells for me, just like the fae," you tell Karen quickly. "Promises and lies work for me just like they work for Kiora. Bargains too."She stares at you....then laughs, liquid and bright laughter that rings through the small cellar. "Then I am well and truly schooled for not respecting your powers, and those of your gods and goddesses," Karen tells you, and you relax slowly. "I wills see you tomorrow, Caitrin," she murmurs softly. Karen towards you, almost as though to deliver a kiss or benediction, and you hold your ground, barely. "I look forward to seeing your pretty friend as well. She is....exquisite. She would make you a lovely companion.""I will remember that to her" you tell Karen and she nods, smiling. There is a black and crimson blur, something moving, and your heart is pounding as you glance at the still open window.Goddess and God, you're in a mess.>To Be Continued....
Thank you for Reading and Playing. We continue tomorrow night, perhaps a little more slowly.
>>2531193Thanks for running, Karen's a lot of fun, even if she is incredibly disturbing.So that does seem to answer the question about whether Karen's kind is actually outright immune to any form of geas or binding towards a course of action, though I guess she could just be humoring us.
>>2531191>Similar chains settle around Karen's shoulders, and she looks startled, feeling the magical forces binding you together and enforcing your promise.Finally a point to our side.
>>2531198Promises made to fae can easily be broken - it's the consequences that are what makes people not want to break them. So the magic has taken full effect on Karen. Whether or not she keeps the promise is another matter, and if she does break it, there will be serious and powerful consequences.
>>2531233XS, Coyote of Native American myth/ faith seems a lot like Karen. Especially Gunnerkrigg Court's version. Any thoughts about this? Also, would it be possible for Karen to restrict her diet to unredeemable peoplefor a time? And would it be possible to investigate magical methods of sustaining her?
>>2531957Depends on how many unredeemable werewolves and vampires and ghouls there are. Well, ghouls aren't even sapient, so that isn't an issue, there aren't any vampires supposedly, and who knows what else she can eat (i.e. Cait doesn't).You're not wring about the nature of Coyote, but Coyote is an actual deity in this universe..
I don't get your timezone at all, seriously. Do you even sleep?
>>2542333I'm an insomniac that works graveyard shifts.I sleep 4-6 hours on a nimral day. I sleep 2 hours at a time, at best, and manage extra sleep to make it 4 or six. There are times when I will not sleep for a few days. There was once when I didn't sleep for 8 days due to emergency issues concerning friends. I slept for 10 hours after, and that was all. So I sleep, just really, really, really badly.
>>2544308I'm amazed at how you can still be this creative and good at writing if you suffer from a constant lack of good sleep.
>Lynnette>Wow so cute I hope she's the waifu this is really...>Werewolf harlot is her true love so any other relationships would be hollow by comparisonWell fuck you too qm.
>>2548905Fae magic is fucky.>Calling her a harlot without any cause