Ascent – Part 2

This chapter was written in collaboration with Scylla.

Scylla came over to Amon, putting her hand on his forehead. 

“I will be the judge of that, not you.”

Her patient had survived the night, and even seemed a little stronger after a few hours of rest.  However, his strength was fading fast once again as the dark energies continued their rampant destruction of his physical form. 

She had never seen such fear in Amon, and now that the day of reckoning was upon them, it seemed to strike him ten-fold.  His life depended upon how well his fever-stricken mind had worked the equations, and how well this several-era old technology would function.

At least she wouldn’t be alone in the endeavor.  Ben was here, deep in meditation.  The word was that he knew how to balance aether and control energy flows, and if Allagan technology could not contain the energies, he would be the last thread of hope for the technologist.

Scylla examined each of the electrodes along his frame, checking them to make sure that they were secure.  With little sleep and even smaller confidence, it was hard to hide her nerves from her patient.  

Even in Azys Lla, no one would attempt to even try to save someone as far into an aether illness as Amon.  Even with pristine equipment, surrounded by the finest mages in all of Allag, they would have let him die.

Just give him two death tabs and let him fall asleep peacefully… rather than try to rip his very life energies from his body…  Why am I even trying this?  Am I promising him a painful death?

The white mage shook her head, turning to give Amon a final check out to break the tension.  She spotted Ben across the way, also carefully examining the procedure one last time before they began.

Ben seems to believe there is hope…  Maybe there is a chance…

She smirked at Amon, taking one of the electrodes and sticking it to his forehead. 

“Just as I thought.”  The mage looked at the readout with a smile. “No meaningful activity.”

Amon wrinkled his nose at Scylla. “’Tis a fine time for Your Highness to re-discover your sense of humor.”

He wondered for a moment if she’d joked for her own sake, or perhaps his. Then, he rewarded her with a slight smile.

Their interaction was interrupted by Ben, who, in the light of the machine’s controls appeared somewhat otherworldly. Or maybe it was just Amon’s vision blurring and deconstructing things to be as they were not.

Ben held out an unusual crystal that seemed bleached without color or element. Amon struggled to remember where he’d seen such before, if ever.

“This will work as the vessel to direct the aetherflow from your body,” the mage told them. “Due to its wild nature, the energy will want to escape quickly, but we must keep it held back at a steady pace or…”

Ben didn’t have to finish the sentence for Amon to catch the meaning. The Allagan took in a ragged breath, his eyes flicking from the odd crystal to Scylla’s face and back again.

“Is the machine primed?” He asked her using his best Technologist tone.

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