Ladies in Hades and the Dyval Wears Prada
Journal - Trent - Entry 21
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It’s been almost two months now since my last entry and I’m still not sure if I can write about what’s happened clearly. But it’s almost time to meet with my companions again. These events need to be recorded.
It started with the Id Self spell.
Two weeks after my last entry, I finally decided to try the Id Self spell for the first time. At least, the first time I remember. But that comes later. I prepared the area and drew in the appropriate magical energy, and cast the spell.
Seven beings appeared in front of me.
This was not right. Not by a long shot. The theory of the spell is that it should bring one being who is, basically, “me” but from another dimension. Instead I got seven. And, and I still don’t know if this is better or worse, I recognized all seven.
The shifter, also known as “One.”
Jescha, also known as “Two.”
The thief, also known as “Three.”
The muscle, also known as “Five.”
The lunatic, also known as “Six.”
The assassin, also known as “Seven.”
The Deevil Archfiend, also known as “Reagent Baaz.”
The six regular humans were all still stunned, but Baaz seemed to recover immediately. His response was to immediately exclaim “Oh, shit.” And then he vanished, his dimensional teleport ability sending him wherever he wished to be – which obviously wasn’t in front of us.
Just as well. I didn’t want him there either. In fact, I still can’t think too much about this without envisioning dozens of scenarios as to why this spell summoned him, but each scenario is worse than the last. So I’ve chosen to keep that “on the back burner.” The others, though, they were only mildly surprised, but still a little annoyed. “One” seemed amused. I promised to send them back and apologized – this was not at all what I expected! We caught up on what everyone was up to, and that’s when I found out that “One” was actually meeting with his patron god when my spell summoned him here.
At that moment, I felt the full pressure of a god’s attention solely on me. I can’t forget the details of what happened next. As if this mess with Baaz wasn’t enough, a gigantic voice boomed in my head:
“SO. THIS. IS. THE. LITTLE. TEMPORAL. WIZARD… PERHAPS. IT. IS. TIME. THAT. WE. FINALLY. SPOKE… I. HAVE. WATCHED. YOU. FROM. AFAR…”
That’s when I was suddenly wrenched out of reality and found myself floating in an endless darkness, seemingly filled with faint stars. The voice continued to boom at me.
“SO. THIS. IS. THE. TEMPORAL. WIZARD… I’M. GLAD. WE. CAN. FINALLY. MEET… I. CAN’T. HELP. BUT. WISH. YOU. HAD. MORE. TIME. TO. MATURE…”
An expressionless, bearded, old man appeared, sitting cross-legged. Before I could speak the voice boomed again.
“LET. ME. INTRODUCE. YOU. TO. SOMEONE. YOU. MIGHT. FINALLY. RECOGNIZE…”
At that the disembodied head of Tr’nalath Sol-Zechol appeared, and began talking with me. He told me that he received my request for an audience, and reminded me that he was not a patient being. As if I needed that reminder. But he agreed to treat me as an “equal,” and answer a question for a question. Of course I readily agreed. Through this Q&A exchange, I learned that I was NOT returned to the same reality from whence Tr’nalith picked me up, and that there was something about my home dimension which was “incompatable” and prevented me from being returned there.
Tr’nalith then admonished me for using the Id Self spell AGAIN and demanded to know how I learned it. I really didn’t have a good answer for him – as far as I knew, this was the first time I had cast it and I had simply theorized and “figured it out” a few weeks ago. Tr’nalith alluded to a previous conversation with me that I DO NOT REMEMBER ever having. In this theoretical conversation, Tr’nalith had admonished me for using this spell the first time. He told me that few Temporal Initiates are fit to use the Id Self spell and that it has ramifications. It can cause instabilities in the veil between dimensions which can accelerate the destruction of a weakened veil, causing all realities to crumble.
So of course I asked him about my his past memories that I didn’t seem to remember, but the answers I received were cryptic – there was talk of “partitions, or dimensions of the mind,” and I was asked to ponder “to what lengths would you go to preserve your knowledge?” The obvious answer was a journal, like this one, but of course my journal which I kept during training had been… lost… I didn’t answer their question but I don’t think I was meant to. Neither Zurvan nor Tr’nalith deigned to elaborate further.
Instead of exploring that more, I tried to get answers about why the Deevil Baaz was summoned as one of my “alternate selves.” I can’t do their exact words justive here, but suffice to say that question yielded further cryptic remarks about the complexities of the Id Self spell which were not elaborated upon. Tr’nalith then asked me, out of the blue, what I planned to do with the artifact weapon I had. I said I was holding on to it while researching it before doing anything with it.
That was pretty much the end of the interview. Before I could say or ask more, Zurvan announced that tome was up and before I could ask questions about the memory of Baaz/Lars I was expunged from that place.
As expected from a god of time, no time had passed while I was away.
I opened up to everyone there about what just happened, and “One” especially seemed pleased that I had met his god. I then tried to stay true to my word and attempted to use the connection the Id Self spell forges between summoner and the summoned to send them back to their home dimensions, but almost none of them could return. It was as if there were some sort of resistance that I’d never encountered before, and it was blocking the spells from completing. This sounded familiar to what Tr’nalith had mentioned happened to him with me.
I sent “Six” and “Seven” to the Chi-Town Burbs. “Seven” actually had originally intended to travel to Atlantis with “Six”! In the dimension she was from, she informed me, Atlantis was an idyllic paradise populated by True Atlanteans. I corrected her, as far as I knew anyway, and she opted to go to the Chi-Town ’Burbs. For some reason “Three” wanted me to send him to Cuidad Juarez. “Five” confided that he had no-where to go, and I offered him to stay here in Lazlo, with us. “One” opted to leave under his own power.
Only one of them was I able to send back to her home dimension – Jescha. The problem was, this dimension was her home dimension! So she’s either the version of me that’s native to this dimension, or she’s not really an alternate universe version of me and somehow magic was used to not only make her believe she was, but also that the spell would grab her. I’m assuming that the first theory is the correct one.
Which means Tr’nalith wasn’t lying when he said this wasn’t my home dimension.
I re-cast the Id Self spell again, but this time I focused strongly on only summoning forth Jescha – since I had sent her back to her childhood home in the ’Burbs when I “unsummoned” her. This time I only got Jescha, “One,” and Baaz again. While the others were stunned still, Baaz addressed me! He asked me, “Are you having fun?” Then he told me “If you do that again you will regret it.” And like that he disappeared again. I shouted after him, “I fucking regret it now!” Not that he could hear my response, but it made me feel better.
Like I said, it’s been weeks, but I’m still reeling from this. I had considered that Baaz may have temporal powers, but never in my most horrible nightmares did I ever consider he may somehow be linked to me in such a manner. What does it mean? I don’t have an answer to that question, but it disturbs me greatly.
And my memories. Somehow, they have been tampered with – assuming that Tr’nalith could be trusted. Which is a risky thing to assume in the first place, but he’d have no reason to lie when in front of the god of Time itself. What does “dimensions of the mind” even mean? Are my memories locked in my head somewhere, waiting to be discovered? Meditation hasn’t helped. The magic guild suggested one of their members may be able to help with memory issues. He’s a psychic witch doctor who lives in Northern part of the African continent. He apparently is also proficient in cannibalism, witchcraft, voodoo and bone magic. Being a member of the guild should make visiting him a survivable proposition, but I don’t really have the time now.
Three more things, no where near as major as the other events I’ve written about:
1. I thought I had waited long enough to avoid that psychic spike of pain when I was working some magic, but apparently now. I got hit with two more, each one of course worse than the ones before. I brought this up to the guild healers, and they confirmed that this sort of thing is happening to mages everywhere, and there’s no pattern or reason to the cause or the symptoms. It some sort of disease, the healer suggested, that they’ve never encountered. I’ll have to ask Pall Mall about this, and see if he knows anything about it. Jescha heard it first through me, so she didn’t know anything about it.
2. That dinner party I mentioned, it could’ve gone better. I met quite a few people, but most of them currently dislike either me, or Jescha, or both of us. And the few that don’t hate us, well, they’re not really the kinds of beings to directly get in the way of the ones who do. So being in Lazlo has become a bit of a challenge, but it’s mitigated by the fact that Jescha spends much of her time… elsewhere, I don’t know where really, while I’ve been studying, researching and turning a profit at the magic guild. I’ve got more than enough credits to get the supplies I need and leave an expense account for “Five” while Jescha and I are gone.
Time to head to the tavern and meet with my companions for the first time in months. I hope it’s not that stupid “Lesbian Night” there at the tavern again – how a place called “The Hungry Scholar” began hosting such an event, and such a vulgar one at that, I’ll probably never know.
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