145.3 \ 337

It was flashing light in motion between bodies in balanced relation, push and redirection in grim concentration. There was no sound other than the clash of wills. The breeze of the upper air ruffling the skychamber’s curtains brushed the combatant’s cheeks. They watched each other’s motion, looked each other in the eyes, tilting gazes for angle periphery differentiation – focused. This happened for a small eternity, both Princess Ascendant and King Proxem suspended in fluid animation. Both were at peak in this moment, her power in growth, his in fruition. This couldn’t last forever, though it did.

Princess Soleil loosed a silent to roaring scream of effort to throw enough in to tip the scales in any direction; she didn’t know if she was doing it aloud. She committed her body. Feeling the opening between them, knowing it would leave her vulnerable, she took it. There was a decision in every part of the motion. Soleil’s awareness flash-bonded along Dusk-Arrow’s entire edge as it sought destiny. There was no protecting this action.

King Proxem Vario also took the opening when it appeared. It was the only place for his blades to go, he was too good not to use his skill, though horrifying. Nothing less than the contest in this. He respected her and he respected himself. He could see every mistake and consequence. He also committed, and both their weapons might find their mark. Wherever this blow landed, it would not be inconsequential. It would be life-taking.

Strange things happen when a life is truly in danger. Things occur that don’t otherwise occur. A moment may precipitate, that is exceedingly unique unto itself. Soleil’s dragongift separated itself from her.

There was a perception that occupied time within time, which overtook Grant Vario and Soleil, Magus locked in lethal trajectory. Transfixing, he saw everything he might have thought of her or seen her to be – clearly, knowingly, honestly, in distinct simultaneity. Soleil perceived every disguise that she or he might ever wear, abyssal flickers in the fabric of reality. The boon became its own vibration separate from her, the Scale, active, in the air between them; there was the other, the self, and the mirror. A timespan split finely as an atom, perceived completely.

ACAMAR went to claim er scale. Somewhere, there was an important part of er that was no longer bound. Dragons respond to their own business. Acamar went to do this thing immediately, regardless of what was in progress, or the context in which it would transpire. A new Dragon does understand the strong call. ‘E brought what was in er coils, despite the weight. That was the retiring revolutionary. They were immediately there.

ACAMAR saw everything and put everything together, including who ‘e brought. Sturlusson had a place in this. The Dragon’s coils spasmed and sent Raev flying at the speed of physics toward the fight. Raev’s body formed into a spear, clasping the ingot, activating it instantly with total energy.

ACAMAR suddenly tearing through reality had stirred the edge of a fomenting whirlpool of activity throughout the dragonroad dimensional axyes, so it was that there – in that place, in that moment – reality erupted in Dragons. Human perception places them most easily in the sky, and so they filled the sky with all that could be present because they already were in some way; and, there was no more exile.

145.2 \ 337

A liquid fog passing over his vision, Grant watched his blades slither out of their sheaths at the bottom edge of his periphery. With equivalent response, Soleil’s stance changed, initiating Dusk-Arrow’s arc of momentum. A ringing clash shuddered through the room as the first swing was turned aside with a forceful glancing double parry.

“What are you doing?!” The voice tore from Soleil’s throat with half-expected betrayal. The Princess Ascendant had to attack – with this weapon in her hands for this moment, her best defense was to drive him back.

“There has to be an end to this,” stated King Vario between strategic stance repositioning. “It could be ugly, or it could be clean. So much has gone on for so long, I don’t know what I might do.”

The muscles Soleil had grown in her adolescent training remembered her specialty in counterbalancing pirouette, and she kept herself moving in a smooth whirlwind to keep her openings covered and the King Proxem’s cleverness at bay. “There are lots of things you could do!”

“Perhaps not, my daughter.” Vario kept taking the attack, dodging backwards while making occasional entries that altered the course of her parabolic swings.

They paused; his attacks, and her drive, facing each other in the strengthening morning light.

He signed the scroll. Then, they hugged. He sighed and said, “Well, it’s not going to be easy.” They smiled gratefully at each other. It could have been like that. But then, what would have happened? Vario felt like he just knew.

It actually was like they were trying to hug, but completely unable. Huggy feelings of days gone by had been swept away by the effort and the heartbreak. And this, this was the freshest mess. Soleil was suffused with a clarity that was merciless, rightful, and righteous. Everyone and everything that had sent her here wouldn’t let her lose by giving up. She might have guessed what her father was thinking, and to that she couldn’t agree or disagree.

The pause went on almost too long, and their weapons came up again at the same time.

145.1 / 337

“I read the document that I received via signal, but I want to see what you have here now.” King Proxem Vario’s sheathed blades swung lightly on each hip as he approached.

With blades, as trained by your own masters. It was just the two of them, facing each other over this decision. Historically, any other rule had been built or bent for such rare occasions as these.

The possibility of hope brushed Soleil’s otherwise neutral face, and she dropped the scroll a little further on its ribbon as he approached. She unshouldered Dusk-Arrow and let it rest at an angle to one side, tip to floor. The King Proxem stepped within the Princess Ascendant’s guard. She let the scroll drop to rest in her father’s outstretched palm.

Grant Vario took the scroll back a few paces with him. He undid the ribbon and pen, found the top of the text, and let the rest of the scroll fall gently open. It just barely brushed the floor. He felt the edges of the good vellum as he inched it up, reading. The collated sections glowed with fresh ink. Soleil felt the heft of the hollowed greatsword in her fastened grip. She gave the moment the time it needed.

“This is well crafted,” said the King Proxem. He hefted the pen and looked eye-to-eye with his daughter. “It’s very good.” He made sure the pen worked, then set it to the patch of rag in the signing frame and laid down his florid signature, the one for historical documents. King Proxem Grant Vario curlicued the final flourish, closed the pen, and softly laid the scroll down on the floor. Eyes on Soleil, he placed his hands on his weapons, breathing deeply. Soleil drew up and tightened her stance.

144 \ 336

The rhythm kept on running, through rises and falls in the group sound. Their projected vibration carried all the qualities that everyone brought to the aureny, woven into the intentions that accessed their greater outer dimensions.

numinous // soulful // magical // harmonic
// transformational // melodic // resonant

In this moment, there was culmination, danger, and deep memory – so much had come together and evolved in this blink within one lifetime.

expansive // moving // persuasive // growth
// direct // steadfast // intuitive

It all fed the process of the aureny, one that would reverberate for some time, echoing through the gemstone caverns.

gnosis // cogitation // foresight // understanding
// comprehension // opening // insightful // clarity

The stones of legend that they placed around the singing core glowed luminous, reflecting in the finest tempered adornments sparkling in the tufted fur atop their iron hides.

collectivism // linking // interconnection // caring
// peacemaking

heartfelt // muscle // embracing // reach
// warming

The dawn of the morrow began to shine through the beam crystals, telling them the breakfast flowers would be opening in the feasting gardens. Some Aureny would leave to nourish themselves, while others maintained the vibration.

galvanizing // courageous // piercing // driven
// forthright // motivation // correct // righteousness
// ambition // justice // convincing // solidarity

The endurance of this aureny was extremely athletic, even or especially as distributed throughout a fluctuating network.

thundering // great // heritage // mojo

hopeful // comforting // meditative // beseeching
// reconcile // consolation // remembrance

A recognizable satisfaction of completeness was growing, even through the unabated urgency in their drive.

fortitude // insistence // sureness // incisive
// resilience // endurance // forebearance // persistence

The crescendo of the movement was in a way familiar, though saturated in newness of the kind they had dearly sought.

confidence // ideation // pride // identifying
// expression

enlivening // wellspring // gracious // elevating

They would continue until the time had come, and they would know when it was time.