Caramel has decided she actively hates the rift now. It does something strange to her. Her vines are restless, and so is her magic, unbalanced. She doesn’t very much feel like she could use her magic now, judging by the way her vines seem more awake than ever now. It grips at her limbs, a little painfully now (lillies whisper in your ear, why are you here? why are you here?)
Caramel worries. Nonetheless, the Nothing is oblivious to her worries, and things continue to unfold, regardless of her lilies.
“We’re going to bring you all home.” Reina talks, before anyone else can say anything.
“I’m so happy!” The weird creature suddenly gets up, towering over a few of the lons. On even closer inspection, one can see that he’s holding another creature in his hands. Maybe it’s some sort of pippet? “I can’t wait to go back to Andras.”
“Not… Bellacoste?” Aoife asks, knitting her eyebrows at the creature. “Excuse me for the question, but… What are you? You don’t seem like a pouflon, or a vespire.”
“I’m Tiny.” He says, simply, as if this is going to answer everyone’s questions. He quickly adds: “I’m a Woolyne. I’ve never heard of this Bellacoste, or this place at all… But it seems I’m here.”
“Uh, actually, maybe we should wait for the twins for a better explanation.” Axel suggests, shooting a glance at Avalon, who nods.
“Explanations of what, exactly?” Klondike doesn’t look so pleased with the situation. Her flames seem to tremble, as a very familiar reflection of her emotions.
From here on, things take an odd turn. It is explained that they’re not the only ones on the Rift. There is a pair of twin pouflons there as well, people Axel and Avalon never seen before, but seemed capable and oddly powerful.
Their names are Tejat and Jishui. They’ve been helping with the Rift business, trying to find a way to travel safely, and maybe even find the way back home. The twins knew about a wide range of things, and could probably explain the existence of Tiny, and the why he talked about a place that wasn’t known to any of the Pouflons and Vespires present
Caramel couldn’t say she was that surprised with the fact that other worlds existed. Somehow, she already knew it, simply by looking at the curious sky of the Nothing. It only served to poke at her curiosity, a drive to understand how this all worked. Maybe, when she wasn’t feeling sick, she would take some time to investigate the Rift itself, or maybe ask those Twins about it.
For now, the group waited, mostly catching up and resting while they waited for the Twins to come back.
Later, the mages and Knights gather to talk again. Aoife and Caramel are busy making potions, a variety of things that might help. Some of them are bright pink, a courtesy of Marzena, who shared her recipe with them. Very interesting properties, this potion held.
“I feel like we should announce about the exit.” Rose declares.
The group shifts uncomfortably. Everybody knows this.
“I agree, but…” Starts Amy, one of her pooves patting the ground restlessly. “It’s gonna stir up some conflict, I bet.”
Reina adds to this:
“They’ll argue. We shouldn’t say it, not yet.”
Caramel stops stirring the potions for a moment.
“We’ll have to talk eventually. Better sooner than later.” She feels a bit silly giving her opinions, nervous of how they’re gonna react.
They nod, however, some biting their lips in their nervousness. Caramel can let out a relieved breath.
“How about we announce when the so-called twins come, then?” Klondike suggests. It seems like a good idea, to address everything all at once. So, for now, they go back to doing whatever.
Caramel wakes up in the middle of the night (day?). After a particularly bad dream, full of memories of being corrupted, she declares for herself that she's not feeling well. Not emotionally, and not physically, either.
Silence is once again strewn about. The fire that kept some of the lons warm has long since faded, leaving only faint smoke behind. Everyone else was asleep, hopefully to better dreams than Caramel’s. The pouflon herself doesn’t feel like going back to sleep, so she wanders about. A walk surely will take her mind off of things, of the weird way the curse is reacting to the Rift (will it? do you really believe so?).
No, it doesn't help. As Caramel walks, she starts to feel sick again, a bit nauseous. She comes back to the camp, a bit far. She stops there and thinks.
“Hey.” A voice calls out to her. Caramel blinks, suddenly her world becomes more clear. It is one of the Vespires that came into the Rift with them, one that resembles a cherub for its feathered wings. Oh. What did he want? “Can’t sleep either?” He smiles. “I know this is probably not the best time to say this, but…. I like your lillies.”
“Huh…?” Is all she can mutter. It’s true that there’s a few lillies around her body, but…
“Are you an earthtongue mage?” He asks, eyes glinting. She now notices that his eyes are a myriad of colors, much like the sky of the Nothing itself. Curious. She nods, for a lack of words, and he keeps on talking: “That’s so cool! I almost can’t believe I’m here with so many cool mages. Almost makes me change my mind and become a mage instead of a knight, haha.”
The pouflon doesn’t answer. She doesn’t think that she can. The lilies continue to bloom. And the vespire continues to talk:
“Wow!! How do you do that?”
“It’s… Mostly unconscious.” Finally an answer. Then, her vision blurries again, and she flinches from pain. The next thing that comes out of her mouth doesn’t feel like her own: “It’s a curse. I hate this.”
The vespire obviously looks confused. More lilies bloom, moving with the vines, countless. Caramel feels her throat tighten, and she starts coughing. She can’t hear the vespire asking what’s wrong, what’s going on, is she okay. All that she hears is the whispers of the curse, why are you here? you had this coming, you knew this was a terrible ideia.
“Get someone. I need help.”
However, things never go as planned. If Caramel could have a better grip on her muddled mind, she’d see that this Vespire was wearing a particular pendant, one imbued with Aoife’s magic. This was the reason why the vespire didn’t get corrupted until now, despite never being in contact with the rift itself.
So, when she finally loses control and lets out a gurgling noise, lilies falling to the ground, the vines curl around the vespire, taking off his pendant. The help he’s supposed to get never comes.