yinyangwizard: (Seimei's Magic Seal)
[personal profile] yinyangwizard
Seimei leads the way into the cavern, which is lit with little oil lamps and festooned with shimenawa rope hung from little hooks drilled into the walls. After Ragnar comes through - looking more comfortable than Seimei expected in his ceremonial white robe - Seimei ropes off the entrance behind him as well.

"To keep bad influences out," he explains. "Like when you sat under the waterfall earlier."

He's pretty sure that Ragnar gets the gist of what he's saying, even if the translation spell he's hammered out isn't as good as the one in Milliways. Even if it isn't, he explained everything to Ragnar (and Gyda) before they left the bar.

At the far end of the cavern is a pool fed by a natural hot spring. Between Seimei and the pool are two of Seimei's assistants, dressed in their own white robes - a Japanese macaque and a (rather anthropomorphized) tanuki. They kowtow in unison as Seimei and Ragnar enter.

The pool behind them glows faintly with an enchantment of Seimei's own devising. In the pool is Gyda's new body, floating on her back with her face just above the level of the water. She's dressed in white robes, like Ragnar and Seimei, and her hair floats in a corona around her head. It's longer than Gyda's hair in her Milliways body. There are other differences as well: her skin is paler, and any scars from childhood mishaps are gone. Still, the body is very similar to what she's used to.

Gyda herself is in a small jade jar that Seimei carries before him. He gives it to the tanuki, who holds it at the ready by the side of the pool. The macaque fetches a stool and a wand covered in paper streamers. Seimei directs Ragnar to sit on the stool and hold the wand. The macaque brings him tattoo needles and a pair of latex gloves (Seimei believes just as much in biological sanitation as he does in ritual sanitation).

"If you've changed your mind about where to put the geas tattoo, now would be the time to speak up," Seimei says. There's a bit of levity in his tone, but he isn't kidding. They're already committed to this, and the location of the tattoo to anchor the geas is really the only thing that they can change.

Date: 2016-02-21 04:33 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Ink)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
So many things feel vaguely familiar -- there is a feeling about the straw ropes and folded papers that mirrors exactly the strung-up small bones and shells in the Seer's hut, or in the holy precinct of Uppsala.

Nothing here is very strange to Ragnar yet.

"No, here," he says.

The inside of his right upper arm, mirroring the dove and the lark on the left side. If Athelstan and Sinric have that place on his heart-side, then his brave young daughter deserves the same on the sword-side.

"I am ready," he says.

Not even the white robe makes him very uncomfortable; special clothes for a ceremony is something he has worn before, undyed linen that would be drenched red with the blood of sacrifice.

Date: 2016-02-21 05:57 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Ink)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
Ragnar leans back his head, quietly breathing as the needle enters his skin again and again and again.

His own gods ask much harsher sacrifice.

Date: 2016-02-21 06:45 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Far-seeing)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
Ragnar does take the warning seriously; he puts the bit between his teeth (to keep himself from biting his tongue when the full pain hits -- that is only sensible), and when the darkness hits him, he can't help but groan aloud.

Date: 2016-02-21 10:33 pm (UTC)
like_quicksilver: (earl's daughter)
From: [personal profile] like_quicksilver
To Gyda, it felt like she was floating, like the moments after the fever took hold, before she saw her mother lighting the pyre. Just blackness and floating, she felt...just as she was.

Then there was heaviness and she was still floating, but she felt heavy, warm and wet and when she finds herself trying to breath she tastes water. Slowly her eyes open and she sees Seimie and some creatures carrying out of some water and onto some towels where the start drying her off.

He doesn't need to tell her she's weak. She tries to move her arms, her legs, but the best she can do is move her head. Much as she's...aware..that the ritual worked, her body feels as it did when she was sick (only without the fever).

The most she can do is turn her head, a smile crossing her features when she sees Ragnar. "Father.."

She's not sure if it's the water or the spell, but even her throat feels weak.

Date: 2016-02-21 10:44 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Actually crying)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
Ragnar has something in his mouth, but he takes it out.

"Gyda," he says. "You live. You are alive again!"

Date: 2016-02-22 09:11 pm (UTC)
like_quicksilver: (watching)
From: [personal profile] like_quicksilver
Heavy as her arms feel, she forces herself to return the hug, relieved as he is that the ritual worked. To see his face, if she weren't so weak, she's so relieved she's close to crying herself.

At Seimei's request, she lets him have her arm, though her other remains around her father's shoulders: both for support, and just because. "Why've you been calling me as 'gyda-kun?"

He'd addressed her as that before, when they were talking about the ritual, but she was so focused on the subject that the question of her name never entered her mind.
Edited Date: 2016-02-22 09:34 pm (UTC)

Date: 2016-02-22 09:52 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Far-seeing)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
Ragnar holds her while Seimei works on her arm.

He listens to her breathe; that is good enough.

Date: 2016-02-23 03:09 am (UTC)
like_quicksilver: (listening in)
From: [personal profile] like_quicksilver
There was no such distinction back home, not even when her father was Earl. She only became curious when she had a mind to focus on it, certainly better than focusing on how weak she felt.

She tried to shake her head, managing a small jerk for her efforts. To stay here, or milliways made no difference to her. "Might be best if we stay here, if you need to check on me."

This place wasn't so bad. Even if it ached to move her head, her eyes looked all around, trying to absorb it all.

Date: 2016-02-23 09:37 am (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Beardscratch)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
"Actually," Ragnar says, "I don't want to make Athelstan wait for the good news, or miss us at all."

He has enough to worry about without being in the dark about this important outcome.

Date: 2016-02-23 05:05 pm (UTC)
like_quicksilver: (outside)
From: [personal profile] like_quicksilver
The mention of him had her trying to sit up: trying and failing as a dizzy spell hit her. "Then Milliways. We need to tell Athelstan the spell worked. And my friend, Cassie, she was also worried."

They both needed to know, and both were the only ones really aware of what she was trying to do. "They're the only people who really know about..this."

Everyone else, she'd just say she'd fallen ill. That could be enough to explain how weak and pale she was, without drawing much attention.

Date: 2016-02-23 06:09 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Towering)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
"Good thing you brought a tall, strong father," Ragnar grins, "who can carry you home without batting an eyelash."

Never mind that the burn from the tattoo is only slowly settling. He can ignore that.

Date: 2016-02-23 09:01 pm (UTC)
like_quicksilver: (listening in)
From: [personal profile] like_quicksilver
Gyda was fully able to roll her eyes. "I'm not that heavy." She may've felt heavy, but she also knew her father well enough to call him on it.

"Let's go." Her stomach growled. "And get something to eat as well." Or drink: if her muscles were this sore, she didn't want to think of how her stomach would be.

Date: 2016-02-23 09:43 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Towering)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
Ragnar lifts her up, and stands.


Date: 2016-02-24 01:03 am (UTC)
like_quicksilver: (wide eyed/looking)
From: [personal profile] like_quicksilver
Even as they head to milliways, Gyda kept trying to move her arms and legs. She didn't feel numb or that she couldn't move, rather it was that everything ached, like after one of those workouts Cassie made her do.

She wondered if this was how babies felt when learning to walk.

Date: 2016-02-24 07:37 pm (UTC)
bigarmy_strangepants: (Clever)
From: [personal profile] bigarmy_strangepants
"You have time, Gyda," Ragnar says. "No need to start again right away."

Then, he steps over the threshold and looks for Athelstan.


yinyangwizard: (Default)

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