Increasing Winds, by Terry Spafford

Story name: Increasing Winds
Author: Terry Spafford

Date: Spring, 706 CR
Location: Metamor Keep

Overview

Sean arrives at Metamor Keep, and makes a discovery about his magic ability.

Summary

It is a couple days after Coe has cleared Saroth for flight. As he is flying, he sees Sean's caravan, and lands to greet his friend. He gives Sean a ride over the Keep while the caravan pulls into the Keep. Electra re-unites with Sean, and tells Saroth to do a final check-in with Coe, where he is allowed to shift.

Sean is awestruck by all the magic he can see. He and Saroth spend the evening at the Deaf Mule, talking and drinking long into the night. He awakes in the middle of the day with a hangover. He knocks something off his back and over the balcony as he flies towards a mountain lake to clear his mind. Electra is already busy teaching Sean to extinguish fire, and after chastising Saroth sets him to work on his levitation spells. Despite Electra demonstrating the extinguish spell over and over, Sean is unable to perform it.

Just as Saroth succeeds in lifting a rock, every flame in the room suddenly goes out. Sean protests that all he did was try to take hold of Electra's spell, which seemed to make it grow stronger and settle over every flame in the room. Electra is unable to deactive the spell; only Sean is able to see the weaves and undo them. Saroth hears other people in the castle, confused that their fires have gone out and won't relight. Saroth takes Sean around to fix them while Electra consults with Gordon. When they return, Electra dismisses them for the day.

The next day, Saroth awakens to find one of Scratch's daggers on his back. He storms to the dining hall, where Electra and Sean are eating breakfast, demanding to see Scratch. Electra tells Sean to take Saroth's harness from her lab and go for a ride with him, while she handles Scratch. As they fly, Saroth tells Sean about what the Thief's Guild has done to his family, and how everyone in the Keep has turned on him by trusting Scratch. Sean changes the subject and asks about the harness, and Saroth demonstrates with some terrifying stunts that take out his energy. He flies back to the Keep where Sean soothes his muscles, before returning to Electra's lab.

Electra has set up an experiment for Sean: a pile of enchanted rocks all attuned to a single rock that Electra levitates slightly. By mentally grabbing the spell, the same way he did with the extinguishment spell, Sean is able to make every rock fly up to the ceiling; Sean then releases each spell on them so that they fly back to the table.

Satisfied with this experiment, Electra backs it up with additional evidence: the unexpectedly powerful fire spell that Saroth performed back on Magdalain Island, and an unexpectedly strong numbing salve that Sean applied to a patient last winter. She concludes that Sean is a magical amplifier, unable to perform any spells on his own, but able to strengthen existing spells. She warns that doing so could have incredibly devastating effects, and forbids him from touching any more spells until he is properly trained. She dismisses him for the day; tomorrow, she will let Magus take him to the Gates to use his magic sight to study the curses cast there.

Sean and Saroth head to the Deaf Mule, but Sean still feels her explanation is incomplete; he didn't mentally grab those earlier spells the way he did with the rocks and candles, and they didn't become semi-permanent either. Saroth decides they will figure it out later, and heads inside for a round of drinks.

Characters

Main Characters:

  • Saroth: The Keep weather mage. He specializes in weather sense, and is somewhat lackluster in other spells. After they killed his family, the Thief's Guild are his sworn enemies, making Scratch an enemy by association.
  • Sean: A young mage visiting from Magdalain Island. He has exceptional magic sight and the ability to manipulate other spells, but is unable to cast any spells of his own. He learns that he is a Magical Amplifier, a very rare kind of musician able to amplify spells cast by other mages, and possibly weaken them.

Supporting:

  • Electra: A mage at the Keep. She is Saroth's tutor, and gives Sean some lessons. She has a mind link with her twin brother Gordon on Magdalain Island, allowing her to communicate from afar.

Minor Characters:

  • Brian Coe: The Keep physician. He inspects Saroth as he shifts, and declares him healthy enough to shift.

Cameo:

  • Copernicus: A lizard who often wins at pool at the Deaf Mule.
  • Mrs. Gibson: A cook on the Keep, whose oven is extinguished by Sean's spell.
  • Jack: A guard who is Sean's guardian while at the Magdalain caravan.

Mentioned:

  • Gordon: The healer of Magdalain Island, and Electra's mind-linked twin brother.
  • Scratch: A tiger morph and former member of the Thief's Guild. Saroth found one of his daggers in his tower, which sends him into a rage.
  • Lucinda: A girl from Magdalain Village. Last winter, she cut her hand and sought Gordon for healing, while Sean applied some numbing salve. Although the healing worked as normal, the numbing salve lasted unusually long, only just now wearing off. This supports Electra's theory that Sean is a Magical Amplifier.
  • Cerulean: A natural-born dragon of the Keep. Sean saw a charge on him similar to Saroth's, but older and more mature. Sean suspects that it may be some inherent dragon magic.

Referenced:

  • Magus: The strongest wizard in the Keep.
  • Nasoj: The wizard who cast the Curse on Metamor Keep.

Story Connections

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License