#17 - Animal

DreamWidth Mirror
Mood: chipper
Location: Underneath a cat.
Music: Dawn of Wonders // Adrian von Ziegler

What animal best represents your fictomere? Alternatively, if your fictomere could shapeshift into any creature, what would it be?
07/01/02027. total words: 822

   So a god-incarnated-into-a-living-suit-of-armour, a shark faerie, a dryad faerie, a wolf-witch, and a dragonhearted lion walk into a bar and fuck...
   It turns out the punchline to this joke is "you get a traumatized fish with existential issues". Hm.

   So here's the Spectre sex talk. It works like this: when a Spectre fucks a human and that human's only interaction with magic is to fuck that Spectre, you get a human kid who's fucked-up in the head. Their blood knows an echo of magic and probably wants to seek it out at any cost. It also means they have reasonably powerful starting Cosmos, but it's nothing three months' of training can't make up for someone who isn't.
   If, however, that human comes to the Meikai and spends their pregnancy there, you get a beast with a beast's mind, of whichever animal that Spectre is. If they hold say, the Bennu Surplice, then you're getting a bennu phoenix and it'll be about that smart.
   If that Spectre tangoes with another Spectre, then the Meikai will take both animals and shove them together to create a new hybrid. This is why about half of all dragon species on Median can trace Wyvern Rhadamanthys as a direct ancestor somewhere in their family tree. So if you take a Libra dragon (it's a big bearded dragon that is a true dragon and primarily lives in badlands) and a Bennu phoenix, you get Firedancer dragons, which are weird bird dragons who channel lightning through their tails and are functionally invulnerable.
   The children of multiple Spectres are the Vólta-Paidiá, and we're annoying bastards to say the least. We're also called Greek shapeshifters, the shape-changing wanderers, the parents of monsters, and whatever other titles we gain by doing what we do.
   When we the Vólta have kids, they're just beasts of our species, no shapeshifting features or actual intelligence. They can stumble into it though, if they get lucky. If we tango with Spectres or other magical peoples we're likely to get some sort of fusion or new Vólta, like my brother did when he decided to up and father the Maren Griffons.
   (Can you imagine the problems it would have caused had I knocked up Athena Sasha by accident. Nobody would have known what to do. It would have been terrifying, and also hilarious in hindsight.)

   The problem with all of this, to be honest with you, is that it means most of us are entirely new species. Any Wyvern Spectre combined with any Minotaur Spectre is going to make a Libra dragon. But while certain surplices insist that their bearers team up over and over, it's not that common. So there's maybe three Vólta per species tops, with the exception of some of the memory-contractors who just stay with each other over millennia.
   It means that when my brother Albafica was born, he was an entirely new species and utterly unique in all the world. Seven years later I was born and took away his title, and two years after that my darling sister Fiadh was born, but there's only three of us, and with the whammy Sanctuary put on him, it meant none of us really know what we're actually capable of.

   Some things are a given, a constancy between all of us born in the Meikai. We wander, and we don't age past our prime. It's difficult - although not impossible - to kill us. We're shapeshifters voluntarily and naturally, and not spending enough time in both forms tends to make us a little formsick. We return home usually once every few centuries. We don't typically need to eat food, and we sustain ourselves largely by magic. Removing that magic makes us eat food, but doesn't necessarily kill us.
   But everything else? That's up to the Meikai, when it creates a new species.

   The three of us are fish. Lionfish specifically, with a powerful association to plants, usually roses. (My sister got cherry blossoms. I don't know botany all that well, but I'm pretty sure they're a type of rose.) We don't get the bends and when we sing, those of weaker minds than us are compelled to listen. We burn by iron and rowan and we're pretty good with illusions. We're surprisingly able to learn to speak dragon fluently, which is tricky at best with magic involved and impossible otherwise.
   What else we're capable of? I don't know, and only so much can be said by asking "can I do what my parents can do." I don't actually know what we got from my mother Arkhes. Certainly wasn't her abilities as a seer, and I wouldn't argue the dragon language part, not when our father Ilias was as fluent as he was.
   So what am I, really? A fish. Kind of. A deep-sea nightmare? Probably, but that's more nurture than nature. A lion? Only for the pun. Human? Nah. Not in the slightest.