This chapter was written in collaboration with Scylla.
Scylla’s eyes flashed open, sending the interrupted aether flying in as it exploded into a small shower of sparks in front of her hands. With a frown, she turned her visage over to her wayward companion and his ever-running mouth.
Not as she was surprised. In their childhood, Amon had a way of making her practice sessions a bit more “exciting.” When they were adults, they sparred more indirectly, through games of political chess and court maneuvering, gathering and trading allies.
No doubt, the house of Azys was at one of the highest zeniths during the times of legendary rivalry between the technologist and the noble. Then it all came to a tragic destructive end, leaving a long dead Empire with only two weakened clones in the wake. Here they were, spluttering simple aether spells in the yard of a humble company house.
But the woman knew that some things never change, even when left with so little. They were still Amon and Scylla, whether they were mere students in Eorzea or debating in the crystal halls of Syrcus.
Scylla leaned back on her heels, giving a deep bow with a sly grin.
“Why Amon… what an honor to be taught by the master technologist of Allag?!”
She stepped back out of the target, pointing where he should stand.
“Why don’t you school me with your mastery of such advanced techniques!”
With taunting words he’d expected to get a rise out of his rival. Which, in some form, he had. But she was, as always, wise to his bait and merely returned taunt for taunt. Amon was not one to back down from a challenge, especially when his “mastery of such advanced techniques” was being called into question.
The Elezen gave her a flippant glance, then swaggered forward. Flexing his fingers from within his singed gloves, he flashed his million-gil smile.
“Aye, I shall. And I shall not merely make it sway.”
His eyes narrowed on his target, hands splaying before him. He watched as the aether gathered, sparking colors dancing an outline around his form. Vibrating faster and faster, he felt the heat gathering until it became a flame between his fingers.
This part wasn’t what he struggled with. Calling on the aether, holding it and gathering it with the Red Mage’s focus was simple enough. Weaving it into an element of destruction was also not difficult for him.
It was just the release…
He felt the leather of his elemental-warded gloves begin to heat once again.
The release and the focus on directing it where it must go…
Amon grit his teeth as the aether clung to him, rather than leapt towards the practice dummy as he commanded. In his mind, he pictured it all – the dummy bursting into flames, burnt to pitiful ash as his Allagan powers closed in on it.
Instead, a few sparks flew in that direction, but most of the aether decided to cling to him all the more.
“Augh!” Finally giving into the pain of the singing heat, Amon rushed for the bucket of water that he’d placed on the edge of the practice area for just this sort of emergency. Plunging his hands in, the flames extinguished.
He could have sworn he felt a bit of smug pleasure from the misbehaving aether as it released. Finally. Into the bucket. This sent a vent of steam and heated water back at him, over the length of his red uniform, leaving his hair dripping into his drenched face.
“Well, at least you got your flame.”