Mist-silvered gardens and gazing pools before a pavilion.
Banks of clouds roil about here. A throne sculpted from translucent rose quartz rises here upon a tiered dais, radiantly surmounted with a golden sun-in-glory.
You see exits leading north and up (closed door).
A heatless shimmer of sparks bursts into being above the garden, dissipating to reveal a bobbing light of cheerful golden energy.
You tilt your head curiously.
"Hello, hello!," the light chirps delighted, its voice feminine and soft.
You smile and say, "Hello."
The light twirls about with a mellifluous laugh ringing in your ears. "Remember me?" she asks.
You smile and say, "I do! Ah, welcome to my gardens!"
You say, "How have you been? It's been quite a long time."
The light bobs up and down excitedly in assent and floats down closer.
"I have excellent news," she says, glowing ever warmer.
You have emoted: Zyphora tilts her head, saying, "What is the news?"
The light hovers in the air for a moment ponderously, "I was scarcely a new-born spark last you saw me, High Scion."
The light lowers a bit more to your eye level, twirling playfully as she dances around you.
You smile and say, "Yes, indeed you were. You've grown since, but I could recognise your glow anywhere. What do you call yourself by now?"
The light beams delightedly, the gold gaining on motes of other colours which glimmer within.
"Tariel," she admits, "I think I am Tariel".
You smile and say, "Tariel. A pleasure to meet you once again, Tariel! What a lovely name. Did you choose it yourself?"
The light titters with delight as it sparks harmlessly. "I have, I have grown much. I have created it," she reveals.
You clap your hands together merrily.
"I was an unrealised idea for so long but I think I am ready," she insists, "I am ready to become."
Tilting her head, you say, "Become? Become what?"
There is a soft titter as the light floats to the ground and flickers with soft sunlight among the garden's mist.
The light zooms back to your face, glowing palely, "Why become me, of course!" she exclaims.
The corners of your mouth turn up as you grin mischievously.
The light recedes a few steps, her brightness dimming.
Teasingly, you say, "You aren't already yourself?"
"I am... but, I am not like you," she reveals, her voice tinged with sadness.
The light twirls about you, bobbing slowly, "Your gown is beautiful. I have no gown," she says.
You have emoted: Zyphora lifts her hand up towards the ball of light, saying, "Ah, but you just said, you are ready to become. Become what, if not like me? It is very easy to create a gown. But it is not so simple to become."
The spark alights softly upon your hand, glowing hopefully. "Precisely so," she admits, "But I am ready. I am ready and the Lady is not present. She does not hear my pleas."
You have emoted: Zyphora gently cups the spark in her hand, asking, "So the Lady is needed to facilitate your transformation?"
The spark buzzes softly in your hand, "I think so, She is so powerful. I am sure She could make it be. If not Her, whom then?"
The light gains in intensity as it floats up a little closer, "Could you help me, could you help me find Someone to make me be?" she pleads.
You have emoted: Zyphora briefly knits her brows together in concerned thought. "I can try," she says at last. "What is required, do you think? I'm no Goddess, but a part of Her lies within me. I could try."
The light bobs up and down, musing.
You look thoughtful and say, "We could also try visiting Her fulcrux. Perhaps we must go closer to Her for your request to be heard. And if that fails, we could try asking for the Lord Architect's Divine intervention."
The spark jumps out of your hand and twirls about the room, trailing bright motes of light.
"Let us do that," she chirps, "Maybe the Lady will answer. And if not, you say there is another?"
You nod your head emphatically.
You smile and say, "There is."
You say, "Are you able to meet me at Her fulcrux?"
The spark shimmers proudly, "Of course!" she exclaims.
The Fulcrux of Isune. (Transcendental Fulcrux)
Shifting and shimmering in undulating waves, heatless sparks rise in a rippling fountain of light. The graceful, translucent form of a bird of paradise dances in the air, the insubstantial image shifting through a constant stream of vivid colours. A smooth scroll crafted from silk lies on the ground here.
There are no obvious exits.
A heatless shimmer of sparks bursts into being above the shrine, dissipating to reveal a bobbing light of cheerful golden energy.
You have emoted: Zyphora smiles at the bobbing orb of light. "We're here!" she says.
The light laughs joyfully as she dances above the fountain, "Lady Isune?" she inquires.
Curtseying to an invisible presence, you say, "My Lady Isune, Tariel wishes to become. Please hear our humble supplications and help her in her transformation."
The light floats down to bob above your shoulder, peering over it upon the shrine shyly.
You say, "Lady Isune?"
"You are greatly more skilled at communing with the Lady than I," she admits quietly, "I never had to call upon Her before."
You have emoted: Zyphora waits a few moments, laying a corpse of a manifested paradox of knowledge before stepping back again.
You reach out and touch a teardrop pendulum of starlit quartz.
Motes of light wink off of the faceted quartz as the pendulum hovers in response to a distant, unheard vibration, before stilling once more.
Frowning slightly, you say, "Thank you, Tariel. But perhaps She is focusing Her attentions elsewhere, for I am hearing no answer."
The light bobs slowly, her light dim and quiet.
"Perhaps Her attention is turned to greater things," she ponders, "I have took a long time coming to fruition."
You frown and say, "The Seals have weakened, and the Soulless are yet again making their presence known in the Basin. Perhaps She is concentrating on that."
You say, "It is a very serious matter, to be sure."
The spark bursts like a firework and whizzes about the fulcrux. "That is dire," she exclaims, "I did not know!"
"Is there anything else we can do?" she asks as she pauses before you, glittering softly with hope.
You have emoted: Zyphora nods gravely. "That is the best reason I can think of that She is not hearing our prayers right now. And there are some things we can do. I'm helping with the trial to see who will represent Life. Mortals are rising up to see who will ascend to drive Kethuru back once more."
The light beams brightly, appearing more brilliant than before. "I am glad," she admits.
You nod your head emphatically.
The light whizzes about the room, trailing motes of colour. "I could help too!" she exclaims, "If I could be."
"Who is this Architect you spoke of?" she asks.
You say, "The Architect is the Lord Zvoltz, a Patron of Hallifax. He works closely with the Lady Isune to ensure Hallifax's well-being and safety."
"Could He transform me? Make me be?" she inquires, sparks bursting forth in excitement.
A smile tugging at her lips, you say, "I'm sure He could! He is very powerful."
You say, "Would you like to visit His fulcrux too?"
Floats up close and alights upon your shoulder, "Let us go! I do not know where it is," she says.
Motes of light around the caldera pulse brightly as a soft voice echoes,
"But She was lovely, and all She touched became lovely, too.
And She touched the Architect's heart, a place that no other had claimed with their artistry."
"Or if you pick up something a little too heavy for you, does it hurt?
It is only a little pressure on the understood boundaries of yourself."
- Sunshine, by Robin McKinley