28/03/95 [Fount Chamber]
Logged by Brand
Appearing: Brand, Gabriel, Sofia, Deirdre, Jasra, a few other cameos
As you stare at the image before you, it slowly becomes more real.
You have established contact with Gabriel. The contact is very easy to maintain.
To the image of Gabriel, Brand smiles fondly. "The time is now. You are ready?"
The image of Gabriel says "Yeah, I guess I am."
To the image of Gabriel, Brand nods and extends his hand.
You offer to pull Gabriel through.
Gabriel grasps your hand and you pull him through.
As you stare at the image before you, it slowly becomes more real.
You have established contact with Sofia. The contact is very easy to maintain.
To the image of Sofia, Brand says "All is in preparation. You wished to observe."
You offer to pull Sofia through.
The image of Sofia is just finishing dressing, and looks rather miserable, but is trying to hide it.
Sofia grasps your hand and you pull her through.
Brand nods curtly to Sofia and motions for her to stand aside.
Gabriel idly pops his knuckles.
Sofia does so.
Brand makes a small gesture, and the fount gurgles, a few waves of fire splashing higher against the sides.
Brand says "Very good. Now we commence. Gabriel, approach the Fount."
Sofia selects what seems to be a good compromise between curiosity and caution, as far as distance goes.
Gabriel steps forward, with a relative amount of dignity.
A wave of liquid fire spills over the side of the fount at Brand's motion.
Brand moves closer to the Fount himself, scooping some of the raw fire up in his hand. This he drizzles over Gabriel lightly, the liquid flame turning into rainbow-droplets as it falls over him.
Gabriel blinks, but manages to say nothing.
Sofia watches, fascinated.
Brand murmurs to himself as he works, then, louder, "How does that feel?"
Gabriel says "Groovy."
Brand raises his arms, and the flames begin to dance higher.
Brand nods, once. He reaches his right arm up toward the Fount, which raises a wave in response. Another gesture, and the forces sway forward, to envelop Gabriel in a constant film of light.
Sofia shivers a moment, watching.
Gabriel's reaction is lost in the glow.
Brand walks around Gabriel, fashioning the film into a shape, a form, a guise.
Sofia moves only a pace closer and tilts her head to one side, fascinated.
Brand pauses to consider his work. He makes a few small adjustments and the form emerges as a halo of light that suffuses Gabriel, rendering him with luminous profile.
Brand says without looking, "No closer, Sofia. These powers are hazardous to the uninitiated."
Sofia nods, and takes a step back again.
Gabriel's voice floats out of the glow, "It's tingly for the rest of us, though."
Brand chuckles lowly. "So it is. So it is."
Sofia chuckles dryly, "I can imagine."
Brand's voice drops lower, murmuring again. The light around Gabriel alters in response to his words, dimming and brightening.
Brand considers the shape of the corona, nods to himself. Abruptly, he raises both hands in the air, and the aura brightens uniformly, to the point that makes it difficult to watch with the unshielded eye.
Sofia shades her eyes and squints.
Brand curls the fingers of his hand, and the fires grow more brilliant yet, like the heart of a furnace, like the soul of a sun.
Sofia turns her head away, and takes an involuntary step back.
Brand stares into the burning, the flames throwing up crazy shadows all around. He claps his hands, once, twice, three times. The light slowly fades to a more tolerable level as the sharp sounds echo, over-loud, through the room.
Sofia looks up again, still squinting and shading her eyes, in case.
Gabriel stares around the room, uneasy shadows across his face.
Gabriel says "I can see..."
Brand says, sibilant, "You can see. What do you see?"
Gabriel looks up at Brand, his lip curling in a rather unpleasant smirk. "I can see where you failed, father." Flames flicker at his eyes as he turns, gesturing with his arms. "Fear not! I know now how to succeed."
Brand looks slightly taken aback. "I beg your pardon."
Gabriel laughs, and swings his hands upward, flames rising in a curtain about him as he does. "And blind still! I cannot wait for you, father; destiny awaits me...in _Amber_."
Gabriel moves forward and vanishes in a rainbow sparkle.
Sofia's eyebrows move upwards and she watches with wide eyes.
Sofia swallows, "My lord..?"
Brand looks quite shocked. He looks about the Chamber jerkily. "He -- Jasra. Get Jasra, Sofia, and bring her here."
Brand says "I go to stop him."
Sofia nods "Yes, lord."
[The Pattern Room]
Gabriel stands just before the Pattern, considering it, arms still raised.
Brand says "Gabriel! Hold!"
Gabriel says "What possible reason would I have for that?"
Gabriel brings his hands almost together in front of him.
Brand says "I forbid it. You may not attempt this abomination."
Brand's hands rise in response.
A glow begins to swirl between Gabriel's hands.
Gabriel says "You should have thought of that before you set us on this path."
Gabriel says "Now, it is far too late."
Brand moves rapidly around the Pattern, bearing down on Gabriel, paying the guard no heed. He extends his hand toward Gabriel, producing a force that pushes at him, attempting to press him back from the Pattern.
Gabriel stumbles, and looks at Brand in disbelief, then lets go the force building between his hand in the direction of Brand's chest.
Deirdre steps in from the hallway, shutting the door behind her.
Brand's arm comes up to defend himself, the glow mostly deflected off it. The bulk of the force slams into a wall; still, he is thrown to one side by the residue.
Deirdre bangs the door open, stepping forward enough that she's out of its path when it ricochets off the stone wall and bangs back shut. "WHAT is going on here?"
Gabriel smirks nastily. "The Pattern's unchosen to its rescue."
Brand rises to a kneeling posture, his teeth clenched. He makes a throwing motion with one hand, the aim clearly Gabriel.
Gabriel says "Careful, auntie. The last time you played with the likes of me, you got cut."
Deirdre is in her armor; she looks tired, haggard, and grubby from living in a military tent for the past week. She's carrying a light crossbow, and her axe is with her, as usual.
Gabriel immediately is knocked off his feet by force, and slides across the room.
Deirdre ignores Gabriel, her eyes on Brand, demanding, "What's he doing here? What are _you_ doing here?" The guardsman just looks panicked.
Gabriel places his hands against the floor where he is. The Pattern begins sparking unnaturally, and the very stones of the castle shudder.
Brand growls, as he finds his feet, "My son presumes to walk the Pattern. I deny it."
Gabriel says "Oh, father, such small thinking. I propose to remove the Patterns outright, and I plan to start with this one. And you, if you are set on resisting instead of helping me finish what you began."
Deirdre shrugs. She raises the crossbow, almost casually. "All right."
Gabriel sends lines of force creeping through the stones of the floor.
Brand makes an exasperated sound. "Timing, Gabriel, timing." Lightnings begin to enshroud his body.
Gabriel spies Deirdre's crossbow, and _vanishes_.
Gabriel reappears in the main hall.
Deirdre swears rather creatively.
Brand's lightnings splash against the stone Gabriel recently vacated. He looks around, his eyes scanning the walls of the chamber, and he too fades away.
Brand appears on the balcony above the hall, his form ablaze. "Enough, Gabriel. Cease, and we will set things aright."
Deirdre snarls more curses, yanking the door open and running down the corridor. She stops when she's a short distance away from the interfering energies of the Pattern Chamber, and concentrates. She shimmers out in rainbow light, appearing back in the main hall, warily, glancing around.
Gabriel sends forward a hastily prepared wall of force, that sweeps underneath Brand, and knocks into shards a startling number of columns.
Brand steadies himself against the wall as the balcony begins to crumble, then vanishes as it collapses upon itself, becoming visible again at floor level. Again, his energies reach for Gabriel.
Gabriel scrambles away, then vanishes again, only to reappear somewhere on the uppermost floor of the castle.
Deirdre runs up the stairs, shouting for the guards to stop Gabriel; a number of confused Castle denizens have started to emerge, looking generally panicked.
Brand succeeds mostly in rendering holes in the beautiful glass windows of the hall and its carefully crafted walls. He casts about for Gabriel, and, yet another time, he follows him in a like manner.
Deirdre does little other than blunder around shouting orders at guards, mostly involving having Gabriel killed on sight, and trying to find the renegade pair. She follows the sound of shattering glass.
Brand commences fire as soon as he appears this time, the forces he controls wreaking havoc throughout the hallway as they seek Gabriel.
Gabriel dives onto the floor, Brand's flames ripping huge gouges in the walls and floor around him. His clothes begin to smolder alarmingly.
Gabriel waves a hand up and a ball of force shoots forth, missing Brand utterly but caving the ceiling in nicely.
Brand moves aside hastily, adding finesse to the powers he wields, the fires marshalling themselves into a cage of energies as they score their way towards Gabriel.
Gabriel removes himself from the grasping lines, and appears again, this time in the dungeons, just outside Corwin's.
Deirdre reaches the empty spot, curses vehemently, takes a quick look at the structural damage, and opts to head back downstairs, at a run.
Brand clenches his hand into a fist, and makes a frustrated gesture with it. The cage lurches away from him, plowing through the castle in a straight line of destruction, but Brand is already gone, in search of Gabriel again.
Deirdre screams at Brand, "WATCH YOUR AIM!"
Gabriel throws his arms outward, and energies expand outward from him, rippling through the stone of the castle, turning much of it to dust as it spreads.
Gabriel's voice is barely audible through the din, "I'll remove it the hard way, then!"
Brand makes his way through the falling rubble toward Gabriel, his face desperate.
On the first floor, in the offices of the Castle, Nathan summons a horde of Castle bureaucrats to start quickly emptying out as much of the government's records as can be accomplished.
Amidst the explosions, Sara attempts to organize the guardsmen into evacuating the Castle's guests, residents, and servants.
Meanwhile, upstairs, Nathan and Sara argue over who ends up moving boxes of records and who tries to evacuate people from the disintegrating castle.
An enormous rain of rubble bounces off a field near to Gabriel's flesh; he appears to stand on nothing whatsoever as the floor is long gone. The destruction continues to spread.
Deirdre stands still for a moment, attempting to discern the fresh source of explosions.
Deirdre lets loose with another stream of curses, heading for the stairs down to the dungeons, leaping down them two at a time.
Brand remains where he stands, within sight of Gabriel, painstakingly crafting an inconspicuous cage of fields.
The wave of destruction reaches the closest corner of the castle. Things become somewhat, eh, less stable. Okay, a lot less.
Brand begins to set the planes into motion, to box Gabriel in.
Brand moves forward to coordinate the action of the trap.
Deirdre comes running into the dungeons.
Gabriel, oblivious, keeps expanding the destruction. Items from various upper floors come through the ceiling with the rubble.
Gabriel looks suddenly startled as the flames disappear from about him. Brand looks similiarly taken aback as his force walls vanish. His eyes narrow.
Deirdre just lets a crossbow bolt loose at Gabriel, practically not even bothering to aim.
You feel a tingling sensation in the back of your head. Jasra attempts to make contact with you.
You have established contact with Jasra. The contact isn't particularly difficult to maintain.
The image of Jasra looks harried. "Finally! Pull me through!"
Brand pauses, then reaches out with a hand.
Gabriel looks even more startled; it's hard to say whether it's due to the bolt that has just pierced his throat, or his sudden downward acceleration thereafter.
Gabriel falls, in short, downward into the crevasse of his own making, followed immediately by a great many tons of demolished castle.
Brand withdraws Jasra from the air just in time for them to watch Gabriel fall through the hole in the floor, followed by a vast quantity of rock.
Jasra appears in mid-sentance. "...-aged to shut it off --"
Deirdre looks up warily at the several tons of rock above the dungeons.
Brand throws back his head and howls, a single drawn-out note of anguish and despair.
Jasra looks horrified, and runs towards the hole and the rock. "Gabriel!!"
Deirdre waves the crossbow at them, and shouts, "DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE DAMNED CASTLE!"
Jasra whirls to stare at Deirdre like she's out of her mind. "Damn your stupid castle!"
Brand starts to sink to his knees, holding his head in his hands, but draws himself up to stagger after Jasra.
Deirdre waves the crossbow around some more, screaming, "It's about to come down around our HEADS!"
Jasra tugs ineffectually at some rocks. "Gabriel, Gabriel!! Oh Brand, help him!"
Brand looks at the rocks without comprehension. "It's off. You shut it off."
Jasra slams her fist down on one rock. "Yes, damn it! I shut it off, to try and stop you both. What else was I going to do?"
Deirdre, still standing in the doorway, her voice partially muffled by the rumble of collapsing stone, continues shouting. "PATTERN PANCAKES. We're going to be SMASHED FLAT UNLESS YOU DO SOMETHING."
Jasra looks distracted. "I.. I don't know if I can turn it back on from here. Can you trump contact Sharu? He's sort of dead..."
Deirdre yells, "Can we save the domestic disputes and personal insecurities until later?"
Brand considers. "I can move us there." He offers Jasra his hand.
Deirdre bursts out, "HEY! What about me?"
Jasra shakes her head. "Just me - stay here, try to help Gabriel... if you can. And yes, the castle too."
Brand nods, concentrating.
Jasra moves forward and vanishes in a rainbow sparkle.
Brand looks up and around at the destruction for the first time. "I believe --" he mutters to himself. Then, very distinctly, "I believe we are going to be requiring a new castle shortly."
Deirdre waves her arms at him. "You wanted to be GOD! What do you mean YOU CAN'T PUT A CASTLE BACK TOGETHER!"
Brand says "Flora will be very happy. Far be it for me to gainsay her rejoicing."
Brand holds his hand out to Deirdre. "Parys?"
Deirdre stares at him. "What?"
Brand says, firmly, "Parys. We can't have the Regent flattened yet."
Deirdre protests, "But the CASTLE."
Brand says "It can complete its collapse without our assistance."
Brand looks up toward the air, concentrating, and motions toward Deirdre.
A small stone chapel, its ceiling vaulted, the grayness of its walls broken by stained-glass images of knights performing chivalrous deeds, the colors illuminated by continuous magical lighting behind the panels. The pews are arranged in neat rows, the hardness of the polished rosewood made more comfortable by padding of deep royal blue. At the front of the room is an altar, its front covered by a the image of a gold and silver sword against a background of dark blue felt.
The chapel is quiet and dim, lit only by chandeliers at its front, and candles along the central aisle. The pale flickers of the candles highlight the overtones of the rich rosewood of the pews, casting shadows upon the walls. A cool breeze filters in from the courtyard to the north, through the slightly-ajar rosewood doors.
Deirdre yells, "WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING?", more or less startling the bejeezus out of some poor acolyte polishing the pews.
Brand turns, absently. "I must see to Jasra."
[Brand trumps out.]