It took about a bell and a half before the cat-girl returned. He’d begun to wonder if maybe she’d changed her mind about helping him… just to see her rush through the door a few moments later. Then Amon felt a little ashamed for doubting her dedication.
He had to stop doing that, he knew. Just because he was sometimes a lying jerk didn’t mean everyone else was.
“I’m sorry it took so long. I had to search my storage for it,” Koh told him, holding up a small wrapped cloth in one hand. Then she came and presented it to him.
“This is for you.”
When he didn’t make a motion to take it, she began to unwrap it for him. As the contents within the cloth were revealed, Amon moved from a state of mild curiosity to outright shock.
A small, faceted stone lay on the cloth, glittering in a familiar blue hue. Though it looked like any other crystal of its kind, even without contact with it, Amon knew what this was.
“It’s a Syrcus shard,” Koh told him.
He snorted in amusement. “A what?”
“That’s what we took to calling it,” she smiled a bit sheepishly.
“Fitting enough. Where did you…”
“From the Tower, of course.” She chided.
Amon rolled his eyes. “Well, yes. I know that. I mean…”
It was Koh’s turn to flash a teasing grin. “When the Tower opened up, us researchers went in to gather artifacts and any information we could find. Along with Noah’s orb, well… I brought this back.”
“Koh, this is too important for me to take from you.”
“I want you to have it. No arguing!” She retorted. “For me, it’s just something I’d put on a shelf. But this… could help cure your illness. That’s a much better purpose for it.”
It was hard for him to deny the logic of that statement. He didn’t like it, but he didn’t have much of a choice.
Amon motioned towards the shard with one hand, glancing at Koh for permission. “May I?”
She shot him a relieved smile, and extended the shard towards him. “Sure.”
When his fingers brushed over the azure surface of the stone, he lost all sense of everything around him. The shard shuddered and suddenly took a life of its own, instantly connecting with his energies, drifting up out of Koh’s hands unaided.
The cat-girl jerked back, giving a yelp of surprise.
Like closing a circuit, the shard instantly became one with the flow of his aether. Distantly, Amon was aware of it bursting into a soft light, the blue energies tracing lines across his hands, filling him with a sensation of power that he last felt long ago, in the Tower.
But as his mind drifted, becoming lost in thoughts of the past, his ears caught a sound. Koh repeating his name over and over, sounding alarmed. Her face came into focus, and the room around her followed. The shard shuddered, and the light faded as it dropped back into her hands.
The cat-girl stammered, “A-are you alright?”
Amon shook the energy fuzz out of his mind and murmured. “Yes. Yes… that shard will do.”
She continued to stare at him in concern.
“I’m fine,” he finally answered her question. “But as you can see from that reaction, a raw shard needs to be shaped into a true focus.”
“Oh…” Koh looked down at it. “I guess I didn’t think about that.”
The Elezen mused, looking at the shard, too. “I’m afraid crafting magical artifacts was never one of my areas of expertise.”
“I’m disappointed,” the cat-girl joked, trying to lighten her own mood. “I thought you were good at everything.”
Amon just grinned. “Maybe in my own mind.”
Koh sat silent for a little while, before she turned to blink at him. “But you know…”
“Maybe Noah can help.”
Such an obvious answer, he just about kicked himself that the girl thought of it before he did. Amon didn’t know a whole lot about what Noah specialized in as an Archmagus, but she was often associated with magical relics. Even if she couldn’t fashion a focus, she might have some input on where to start with such a project.
The only thing he managed to say was, “Do you think she would?”
“Why wouldn’t she?” Koh arched an eyebrow at him.
“Just asking,” he spread his hands.
“You know she’s fond of you.” The girl crossed her arms.
“She is? That’s news to me.”
“I’m going to hit you again.” She warned him.
“Please, no!” Amon simpered, faking fear.
The glint Koh’s eyes said she just might, but for his mocking more than his words.