Monday, August 3, 2020

Microstory 1421: Sourced

Somewhat early on after the Deathfall sent Springfield to Durus, the first ever non-source mage received a special temporal power from one of the sources. Aimo Lahti gave his older sister the ability to separate liquid molecules from each other. On a small scale, she could pour a bottle of fruit juice into a beaker of acid, and then teleport them away from each other. This could be very useful, but her family didn’t want anyone to know about it. They didn’t even know that it was Aimo who accidentally gave it to her in the first place. They kind of just thought she later developed a power of her own. It wasn’t until 2029 that the fact that these children were capable of doing this to others came to light, and it was less of an accident. Aqil may have been considered the intelligent one, but Orabela was the wisest. She was always underestimated intellectually, because of her physical beauty, which was—not only inappropriate for a twelve-year-old—but harmful to her self-esteem, and standing within the community. She was worried that the way people treated her would only get worse if she were to strike a deal with the proverters. If they made her look 23, then people would start looking at her like she was an adult, but no amount of rapid aging would make her actually an adult. That was something that came with time, experience, and maturity. She did not fault the other children for making this deal, but she wanted no part of it. They were tired of being treated as children, and figured this would help them, but it would most likely just give people the wrong idea about her. Ecrin Cabral was several years older than the source mage children, and had only recently turned 18 when the proverters aged them to look older than her. She found herself quite protective over Orabela, and her choice to remain as she was. After the deal was done, the other sources decided they were no longer okay with letting Orabela make her own choice. They thought they knew better, and that she would thank them later. They tried to force her to go visit the proverters, and she was helpless to refuse. She couldn’t take on all of them at once. But Ecrin could. At least that’s what she felt she had to do. She fended them off, even though it went against everything she was taught to believe about the divinity of the powerful children. The fight caused pretty severe injuries on her part, and left her combatants completely unscathed. She could have died if their parents hadn’t intervened, and put a stop to the fight altogether.

Ecrin spent weeks in recovery. During this time, the town decided the children would have a lot of authority over Springfield, but still wouldn’t be allowed to pressure anyone to do anything against their will. They could lead, and they could protect, but they did not rule unilaterally. Smith tried that years ago, and it didn’t work out for anyone; not even him. Once Ecrin was better, Orabela admitted that she understood what her real power was. Yes, she and the others all had abilities of their own, but their true purpose was to give other people their own gifts. She knew what Aimo had done for his sister, and she realized that they could all do the same, to anyone. So she chose Ecrin as her first receiver. She bestowed upon her the gift of agelessness. Ecrin would be able to be hurt or killed when attacked, or from an accident, but barring that, she would never get older in appearance, decline in general health, or die. As the wisest among them, Orabela determined it would be best that no one knew this particular gift was given on purpose. If they were to ever do it for anyone else again, people would have to believe that it was random, and beyond the giver’s control. In fact, she saw that it was entirely possible to make it random anyway, to promote fairness and harmony in the society. While Leena Lahti would later be outed as the first true sourced mage, Ecrin held the title for a good long time. But it would not end there. This gave the other source mages an idea, and it changed everything about how they planned to run Durus from then on. This was the beginning of the beginning of the Mage Protectorate.

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