Convergence, by Oren the Otter

Story name: Convergence
Author: Oren the Otter

Date: June 706 CR, 2 days after the Summer Festival
Location: Metamor Keep

Overview

Oren finally receives the curse - two of them. Felicia arrives at the Keep, looking for her brother Oren. Vitra is discovered, and she, Oren, Felicia, and several of their friends are placed under arrest.

Summary

Oren practices with his staff before he begins training for the Long Scouts the next day. He returns home, cooks some fish for himself and Gornul, and sleeps fitfully that night. Not only does he oversleep, but two curses have affected him that night, making not just an otter, but a young girl otter. She goes to seek help, first from Pascal, and then from the Os-Var-Khai servants.

Oren is surprised to see Ana at the tower with Gornul and the three Os-Var-Khaians. When Oren introduces himself, Ana is shaken and horrified by Oren's transformation. Hurt by Ana's outburst, Oren runs off in tears. Gornul glares at Ana, who defends herself with the recent trauma she's been through, and storms out.

Meanwhile, a woman from Hipocc arrives in Metamor Keep, seeking the whereabouts of her brother Oren. One of the guards at Metamor's gate is friends with Oren, and tests her knowledge first, as there has been a recent attempt on his life. Shamgar and his girlfriend, the former assassin from Devil's Strand, are passing by when the assassin recognizes the Hipoccian and instinctively attacks, right as a cart of firewood comes between them. Felice immediately recognizes the assassin as Blake Tizzo, the famously inept assassin from Devil's Strand. Blake admits that she was sent to kill the childlike warrior, and Felice guesses that Devil's Strand sent Blake up north so that he wouldn't disrupt the battle with Hipocc. As mortal enemies, Felice asks if they should fight. Blake suggests they get a drink instead.

As Misha is practicing his weapon and waiting for Oren to show up, he sees Gornul sitting on a tree limb, carrying Oren's vest. Gornul tells him about Oren's recent transformation, and Misha asks that he head home and tell Oren to come to him as soon as she's ready. As Gornul leaves, one of the guards approaches with bad news.

After crying by the river, Oren decides to get some new clothes from a local seamstress named Crystal. On her way home, she just misses Felice entering the Deaf Mule, and finds Vitra, changed into a black-and-white weasel, walking with Jesse Roo, his mother, and Christina. He quickly takes them to his home to give Vitra a rune to hide her from magical scans.

Gornul and Felice arrive at Oren's place within seconds of each other. Oren sadly notes that this is her new form, until Jesse suggests shifting to a halfway form. Oren is able to shift to a teenage male, which Kim suggests is due to his antimagic nature. Felicia still cannot believe this is her brother, until Oren shares a childhood memory with her. Just as the two are embracing, Misha enters with several guards and places all seven of them under arrest for aiding the enemy at war.

Characters

Main characters:

  • Oren: A half-otter man from Hipocc. He receives the AR and TG curses at once, becoming a little girl otter. He is arrested, along Vitra and five of their friends, for aiding the enemy at wartime.
    • Before her change, Oren wore a royal blue vest. Now she wears a pink dress from Crystal.
    • Because of Oren's complex magical circumstances, Oren's TG curse is temporary, and he is able to shift out of it. Oren's AR curse is more difficult to shift; he only manages to shift up to 13 years of age.
    • It was on Alvin's birthday that Oren was baptized by his grandfather, and given scriptures by Felice that he kept to this day.

Supporting:

  • Gornul: A dragonette who speaks in pictures. He is one of the seven people arrested.
  • Vitra: A half-lutin refugee. She is becoming a zorilla morph, a kind of weasel. She is one of the seven people arrested.
  • Felice: Oren's sister. She has been in the valley for nearly a week, searching for her brother. She is arrested along with Oren and five others.
  • Misha: Head of the Long Scouts. He was expecting to begin training Oren today. Instead, he hears about Vitra, and arrests her, Oren, and several of his friends as possible conspirators.

Minor characters:

  • Sawana: Oren's childhood friend from Hipocc. She is unable to handle Oren's transformation.
  • Ye: A diplomat from Os-Var-Khai.
  • Shamgar: A rhino morph, Blake's boyfriend.
  • Blake Tizzo: An assassin from Devil's Strand, a female gendermorph, and Shamgar's girlfriend.
  • Bradfox: A gendermorph guard and Oren's friend, known for wearing a kilt. S'he meets Felice at the gate, and confirms that she is a relative of Oren.
  • Jesse Roo: A farmer boy from Lorland, a kangaroo morph. It was at his and his mother's cottage that Vitra was staying. He is one of the seven people arrested.
  • Kim Roo: Jesse Roo's mother, a gendermorph. She, along with her son, are two of the seven people arrested.
  • Pascal: The Keep alchemist, known for her fondness for unusual fur colors. She determines that Oren's antimagic is the likely cause of his double curse.

Cameo:

  • Mitok: Gornul's father.
  • Wasoko Desuka: A diplomat from Os-Var-Khai. He is also a Follower priest, and is giving a service when Oren enters.
  • Mong Ho: A diplomat from Os-Var-Khai, who has received the gendermorph curse.
  • Crystal: A seamstress. She has made uniforms for at least one Long Scout, a girl age-regress.
  • Christina: A mind mage from Lorland. Mentioned as "the other woman with Vitra", she is one of the seven people arrested.
  • A grasshopper in a waistcoat, from a village in Metamor Valley but outside Metamor Keep.

Referenced:

  • Maurice: A tailor south of Metamor Keep. He is Oren's usual tailor.
  • Lucas: Felice's pet thirdak.
  • Alvin: A relative of Oren's, born on Easter.
  • Thomas: Duke of Metamor Keep.
  • Nerr: Oren's father.

Locations

  • The remaining villagers of Hipocc have gone into hiding, using concealment runes and thirdaks to hide in the nearby hills.

Story Connections

  • This story takes place immediately after That Which Should Be, which explains why Vitra had a nightmare, and Ana is with the Os-Var-Khaians.

Points of interest

  • In order to protect themselves from Devil's Strand, Hipoccians have developed antimagic runes to nullify magic scans.
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