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PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, '10, 5:14 pm
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So here's a bit of background on Es. I'm not finished with this story, but I thought I'd post what I have so far so you all can have something to read already. It takes place in 1276. Esmeray is 17 years old and has been at Esper Mansion for only a year. She's still kind of an outsider, since most of the Espers and other people at Esper Mansion that are her age grew up there. She has some catching up to do with her training, and is therefore the oldest in her peer group. She also has some interesting ideas about techniques and gets herself into trouble often by using them "creatively."

This is the first part of a story involving the worst of her creative technique usages, and is sort of the turning point to take her training more seriously and to reach a compromise between becoming a part of the Espers' commune and keeping her individuality.

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Bridging the Divide

Esmeray struggled to open her eyes. At first everything was blurry, but after a few moments she could tell that though she was lying down, she was not in her room. It felt and smelled like the infirmary. As she continued to adjust her vision, a noise came from beside her, the sound of a throat clearing. Esmeray turned her head and could almost make out who it was. Firdaus?

“Welcome back to Esper Mansion, Ms. Younan,” Firdaus’s husky voice greeted the groggy Esper woman. “You had quite the journey two days ago. Do you remember what happened back at Crevice?”

Crevice? Two days ago? Esmeray strained to collect herself, but she still wasn’t exactly sure where she was or what the time of day was. She hated getting a question right off the bat, but she was used to it with her mentor. Firdaus Taheri was a no-nonsense, blunt man. He was patient to a fault, but he expected a lot from his students in return. It was probably the reason Esmeray had been assigned to him. As much as she was soft-spoken and easy going, she was also stubborn and unpredictable.

Oh yes, unpredictable. That’s what happened, Esmeray thought. She had tried to cross Crevice by catapulting a rope across the canyon using... foi? Oh my, did she really attempt that? It all seemed so stupid now. How stupid depended on what her mentor had to tell her about the part of her Crevice expedition she didn’t seem to recall.

“I... remember the rope?” Esmeray sheepishly mumbled to Firdaus, rubbing the top of her head.

“Mhmm,” mused the older Esper. “And?”

“A grappling hook?” continued Esmeray.

“Yes, now we’re getting somewhere,” Firdaus spoke calmly.

“I think I was trying to get the hook and the rope over a tree stump on the other side of the canyon,” Esmeray grimaced, knowing this was all sounding very bad.

“I see. Because taking the marked pathways through Crevice would be too much trouble? Make too much sense? Please, indulge me.”

Esmeray hung her head low. She didn’t want to have this conversation anymore, especially because it could only get worse at this point and she already knew the lesson to be learned from it.

After he felt the conversation had stalled long enough, Firdaus asked, “Would you at least tell me how you thought foi would help you accomplish your goal of zip-lining across Crevice?”

Esmeray winced as she hesitated. “I... thought that... maybe if I collected enough energy before releasing the foi that it would create more of a...”

“Esmeray!” her mentor intervened, his voice thick with disappointment. “You do realize that foi is concentrated fire, right? Musk cats know that!”

“I know,” Esmeray sighed, nervously scratching her right leg. She quickly stole a glance at Firdaus, who was glaring hard at the leg she was scratching. He then looked back at her, though Esmeray’s eyes were already elsewhere.

“Feels a bit itchy, huh? Why don’t you take a look?” he suggested.

This time Esmeray’s full attention was on her mentor as she gave him a most perplexed expression. Firdaus, still looking displeased, raised an eyebrow and motioned towards her leg with a nod of his head. Esmeray swallowed hard. There was more to this than a simple technique miscalculation that put her under for a couple of days, she figured.

She slowly peeled away her sheets and covers and pulled up her gown to reveal a ghastly sight. Her right thigh was scarred the full length from a major burn, and there was a long gash on either side of her leg. Esmeray was too shocked to even gasp. It was all healed over already, no doubt because of some Esper’s mastery of healing techniques, but the damage had been so great that there was no way it would look the way it did before Esmeray did... wait, what did she do? She looked on to her mentor, waiting for the story.

“Congratulations on setting yourself on fire, falling down a sheer cliff, and then impaling your leg on a petrified tree, all while you were completely alone, so that we found you only several hours after your fall. We should give you some kind of award for accomplishing such a feat,” Firdaus explained to Esmeray, his words dripping with sarcasm. “You can thank Araminta later for your new leg. It took an incredible amount of work on her part to basically rebuild it from what was a singed and bloody stump by the time you were located. Oh, and you broke your collarbone and three ribs as well. She fixed those, too, though they were minor compared to your leg.”
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