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[Graded]A Leg To Stand On
Topic Started: Aug 3 2016, 03:09 PM (539 Views)
Consciousness returned to Trevor in a slow, painful wash of color and light. He found himself laying between clean, starched sheets and dressed in a simple cotton gown. The smells of disinfectant and other less pleasant things mingled with the sounds of bustle and the occasional low moan or groan of pain. He also felt the strange sensation that greeted him every time he woke up and realized that one of his legs was missing. He’d gone from a sense of disbelief to anger to despair and now most of the time he just felt a numb emptiness. Everything he’d dreamed of felt like it had disappeared. How could he be a great swordsman or inventor like this? He couldn’t imagine how he was going to go on or adjust to this terrible injury but he supposed he’d have to manage somehow. There was nothing else to do but to try and go forward.

The doctors had told him that he could be fitted for an artificial limb of some sort but that it would limit his mobility and place a number of obstacles in front of him. He was going to accept that fact but he kept wondering if there wasn’t some way he could solve that problem. Surely there had to be something more than some clunky fake limb out there that he could be fitted with. As he thought, he began to turn his mind towards Blitz and the Bastion. As his mind turned in that direction, a realization began to dawn on him. Blitz had at least one prosthetic limb and clearly they functioned at a very high level. It gave him a sense that maybe things weren’t so desperate after all.

Trevor had resolved to have a note dispatched to Blitz to ask him to come find him and provide him with some advice. He had to summon him and soon. There was no time to be lost although it occurred to the youth that his mentor might also have been caught up in the war. He wondered if the man was actually nearby and more easily accessed.

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Blitz's heart was somewhat knotted as he headed for the Oak Town medical ward. The structure was a temporary one, set up in case the Fioran forces needed tending to, and in a war, there were always injuries on both sides. Unfortunately, it had no doubt seen alot of action. Ironically, Blitz wasn't going there to get any injuries tended to, even though he had likely taken the most damage out of any of the survivors of the first stage of the War. He was heading there for two reasons - to see who would have died had he failed to stop the arrow, and to see if there were any familiar faces among those who were hospitalized. Last time they'd clashed with the Boscans, it wasn't until afterward that he found out that his friend Yovel had died during the clash. If someone had been on a different battlefield as Yovel had, there wouldn't have been anything he could have done, but he told himself that he had no excuse not to at least try to hear the news for himself instead of having to hear it from someone else.

He entered the front of the hospital, noting that things looked undamaged. Guess the Oak Town defenders managed to hold the line after all, Blitz thought with a small smile. Well done on their part. He went to the front desk and asked where the victims from the war effort were being treated, explaining that he was one of the fighters and wanted to see if any of his friends were there, as the list of injured was too long get everyone's names right away, especially with some still out-cold from the fighting. The nurse directed him down the hall and to the right, through a pair of double doors and into a room that looked like they'd refitted a warehouse to suit their needs for the sheer number of patients.

It wasn't pretty. The smell of disinfectant was only mildly stronger than the smell of blood and open wounds. Blitz exhaled to clear the scent from his head before wandering through the room, noting the faces of those on the stretchers, the doctors and nurses too busy to tell him otherwise. He stopped at one stretcher, though, because his heart rate spiked briefly when he realized he knew the face, but somehow didn't think the injury on them possible - his new apprentice, Trevor. Missing a leg.

"Trevor, that you?!" Blitz said, kneeling by the stretcher and glancing at his missing leg. "Jesus, what happened out there? Were you on the defensive line?" He shouldn't have been a part of the war at all, Blitz thought. He's capable, but the kid's too nice for his own good. He's not suited to living a life by shedding the blood of others.
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Sometimes Trevor felt like fate caused the right people to fetch up at exactly the right time. He had just been thinking about Blitz being around and somehow here he was. Something of the concern in the inventor’s voice made him feel like crying but he bit his lip and forced himself not to give in to emotion. He had never been one to be anything but stoic and he couldn’t buckle now. He cleared his throat and took a deep breath before replying.

“I...tried to stop someone from killing more of our soldiers and this is what happened. She just...well...you can see what she did. It was my duty to help defend Fiore. I had to uphold the honor of my family name and of the warriors of my clan. It is what my swordmaster would have wanted from me. I just...never…”

His voice trembled but the tears that threatened didn’t fall from his eyes and give him away. He took a deep, somewhat ragged breath before he kept speaking.

“I know that you have a limb that you fashioned for yourself. I...would like you to help me make one. I cannot let this...this setback stop me. I have too many goals in my life that I wish to accomplish and I cannot stop now. You can take me back to the Bastion, the doctors say I am well enough to travel, so we can begin work on this project. I believe that until we accomplish what is needed, Shoop and Morgan can assist me and I do have a temporary prosthetic so I will not be completely in your way.”

He paused and finished, “I hope that was not demanding. What I meant to ask was: will you please help me do this, Blitz?”
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Blitz listened as Trevor explained what happened to him, how he lost his leg. Apparently one of the stronger foes had been trying to cut a path through their forces and Trevor had stopped them, but at a price. "I see..." Blitz said, exhaling slightly. "Well, I can't exactly fault you for that one, given my own experience. When it comes to being stupidly brave, like master like apprentice, I suppose." Blitz stood up, unbuttoning his vest and taking it off to hold to one side so Trevor could see his own injury - a scar over an inch wide that ran across his entire torso on his right side, from right shoulder to his solar plexis. "A gift from a Boscan archer. He was summoning a great deal of magic into a single, massive arrow, and fired it at Oak Town, intending to destroy the back line of defense and our non-combatants while we were busy holding the front. Every mage there put up a barrier or did something to try and slow it down or divert it, and it almost worked, but it wasn't quite enough." Blitz put his vest back on and buttoned it back up. "I put myself between the arrow's line and Oak Town, and it was a good thing I did, even though it certainly didn't seem the best idea in the moment - it managed to shatter through every barrier we placed before it, even mine. I managed to stop it with my own body, but then it exploded and sent me sailing to the ground, and I got this lovely scar from a large gash, and broke every rib I had, not to mention punctured my lung."

"And half-deaf, as you didn't respond to my call immediately, either," Shoop said.

"And that. Basically ended up sitting in a crater that was partially full of my own blood while patching myself up with magic. I helped out afterward, but mostly dealing with the tanks and soldiers, staying off the very front of the lines so I didn't push myself too hard after a magical healing of that extent. First time that I've had to use my own healing spell twice on myself. Speaking of which..." Blitz held a hand out over his apprentice, and a green glow surrounded him. "Let's get you back into fighting shape so you can get to the Bastion. I can't restore the leg, but I can fix everything else."

"Not for lack of trying." Shoop pointed out.

"True enough," Blitz said with a nod. "I tried to regrow my old arm more than once with my healing, looked at ways to expand my healing abilities, but for naught, as limbs are simply beyond my healing skills. That would take someone whose magic specializes in it. Mine's a bit too focused towards combat. Still, not a huge loss - I had an arm. Now I have an arm I block things with that has a laser cannon in it." Blitz said with a slight chuckle.

"I can help you in making a new limb for yourself - god knows I've gotten some practice - though I'll let you take some of the reigns on it. If it's going to be a part of your body, it needs to suit YOUR creative designs, not mine. Though of course I'll help ensure that it's fully functional, like my arm. You'll still be able to 'feel' through it, it'll just take a bit of fine-tuning and getting used to, I promise." The green glow around Trevor faded, and Blitz held out his right hand. "Are you good to move now? That should have patched up any lingering injuries you had."
Edited by Balmung6, Aug 5 2016, 02:02 AM.
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Trevor moved everything experimentally and nodded, despite the missing leg, he felt like he was much better. The lingering aches and pains had gone and he could move the rest of himself fairly well. He had Blitz pass him his prosthetic limb provided by the medical corps and the crutches he’d also been given. It was awkward and he felt a bit woozy from having been laying down for so long but after a few minutes of hopping about he turned back to his mentor.

“I think I am prepared to move onward. I cannot wait to get back to the Bastion so that we might begin work on this leg. I am not going to allow this injury to prevent me from fulfilling my tasks and goals. In fact, it can become a spur towards ever greater invention. Your expertise will prove invaluable in this regard. In many ways, it is fortuitous that I met you when I did, I can hardly say that this injury is anything other than devastating but somehow I feel it might open up a new chapter in my life.”

He looked at Shoop as well and nodded.

“I believe that I will also need your assistance for a while, Shoop. You have already proved most helpful and congenial to me and while my movement is somewhat curtailed, you may prove even more so. Any aid you can give would be much appreciated.”

Balancing on his crutches, he turned to face the doorway of the hospital and spoke to Blitz again.

“Lead on, Blitz. I will follow and do my best to keep up a reasonable pace although moving this way is both awkward and something to which I have yet to become accustomed.”

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Trevor seemed cautious when he moved at first - and Blitz could understand that much, he'd certainly been careful when he first lost the arm and had it replaced - but seemed to be semi-comfortable, or as comfortable as he was going to get until he got to the Bastion and got started on his new limb. Blitz grabbed the prosthetic leg off a nearby bench and handed it to Trevor, along with a pair of crutches that were propped against a nearby wall. Trevor took a moment to practice walking on his new leg, the same way one walks around to get a feel for a new pair of shoes. While he did that, Blitz walked over to a nearby nurse to see about getting Trevor discharged from the medical ward without causing a fuss.

"Pardon me, miss, but I'd like to inquire about getting the young man over there released from here." Blitz said, gesturing to Trevor, who was still pacing to test the new limb.

The woman - a Stellan Druid, if her green-tinged hair, long robes, and somewhat pointed ears were any clue - opened her mouth with a semi-stern look on her face, but when she spotted Trevor walking about, she paused, then said "I thought the young man still injured, but it appears he's recovered, save for his leg."

"That's actually why I'm having him released - he's my inventing apprentice, you see, and I'm going to escort him - carefully - back to my home to create a more suitable limb replacement, so he can live out his days without worry for his functionality."

The woman looked surprised."If you can help the young man recover, then I wish you the best." Then she paused briefly. "With your permission, might I lay a favor upon you and the boy?"

Blitz nodded before turning his head to talk over his shoulder. "Trevor! Come here for a moment." After Trevor walked up, the woman pulled out a small flask, opening the stopper and dipping her index and middle finger tips into it, revealing the contents to be something resembling clear water mixed with bits of red leaves. She drew a small symbol on both Trevor's chest and Blitz's before clasping her hands together, Blitz bowing his head for a moment before the woman unclasped her hands. "Thank you." Blitz said with a slight nod, the woman nodding back. "I wish you both the best."

The duo left the ward together, out through the front doors, and that was when Shoop spoke up. "I can help you out, no problem, Trevor, but first things first, Blitz - the heck was that about? Usually that kind of formality isn't something I'm used to seeing you just patiently wait for."

"Maybe so," Blitz said with a slight shrug. "But given that we're at war with one country, I feel it more appropriate to respect the traditions of the others, if only to avoid ruffling any more feathers. Anyway, let's keep moving. Thankfully, I set up one of the portal waypoints not too far from here, so we don't have to hike back up to the Bastion again."
Edited by Balmung6, Aug 8 2016, 04:17 AM.
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There was obviously much more to Blitz than Trevor had initially appreciated. The way he calmly waited for the druid to complete her ritual was not something that the youth had seen in the active inventor but his explanation was reasonable. The druid's presence was something that Trevor found soothing. She reminded him of the priestesses back in the North. They were in touch with the spirits of the natural world in a way that awed him. This woman radiated the same sort of air and after her blessing, he felt even more ready to move on.

The group began to move with Trevor making his way the best that he could. As a young, fit person he was able to adjust to the injury with more grace than someone older and less healthy might have. It didn't make it any less awkward or uncomfortable but it did at least mean that he'd be able to adjust to his new reality more readily. He felt a surge of confidence as they made their way towards the portal but he still had questions.

While they walked, he turned his attention to asking one of those questions of Blitz.

"How long does it take before you start to...not forget...but adjust so completely to having this new limb that sometimes you don't consider it? Right now, it seems so utterly foreign to me that it will be possible to do that but I am sure at some point, it does begin to happen."

He paused and added, "Perhaps it is foolish of me to try and anticipate these things but I do wonder nonetheless. Somehow my mind cannot help but ask these questions."
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As they walked, Trevor asked about how long it took to acclimate to the lost of a limb and the replacement of it. "I don't recall exactly how long it was for me," Blitz said, tipping his head back slightly as he searched his memory. "But I do know that you eventually get used to having it as a replacement as a part of your being. At first, it'll seem weird, but that sensation will wear down over time, I assure you."

Blitz walked down a nearby alley, down the side of some large warehouse, before going around the back and opening the sliding door on the back of the warehouse, gesturing at Trevor to follow him inside. Blitz slid the door shut once he was inside - there were no lights on inside, but thanks to a row of windows along the top of the wall near the ceiling, there was enough light to work with inside the warehouse. It was mostly full of large wooden crates filled with god-knows-what, but Blitz walked over to the only unboxed thing in the building - a small pedestal with a circle on the top, tilted so the circle was at an angle in much the same manner as a podium of sorts.

"I didn't add you into the system yet, so let me go through first, and then walk through when I call you, alright?" Blitz said. After Trevor's response, Blitz would press his hand against the circle, which would glow slightly, then pulse with light once and go dark again. A circle would then appear in the air behind the pedestal and fill with blue light, Blitz stepping around the podium to walk through the light and disappear into it.

Blitz emerged inside the Warp Hub, back at the Bastion. Blitz trotted over to the nearby terminal and pressed a hand against it again. "New authorization. Trevor." The terminal flashed a few times, then glowed green. Blitz let his hand drop and walked back over to the portal sticking his head through, which would reappear from the portal in the warehouse like someone emerging from water. "Alright, you can come through now." Blitz said, before diving back through the portal, waiting for Trevor on the far side in the Bastion.
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Blitz's answer seemed reasonable to the lanky youth so as he hopped along, he tried to imagine when it wouldn't feel awkward any more. There were many more complex feelings in his mind but right now he wasn't in any state to tackle them. His mind flitted to Julian and he wondered if, in some strange way, somehow he was being paid back for what he'd done. He shook the thought away and concentrated on the task at hand.

It was strange to see this disembodied pool of energy floating there but Blitz was trustworthy as far as Trevor could see and he wasn't about to stop now. He was excited, in a bizarre way to get this new project underway, so he moved forward after his companion said that it was safe for him to do so. The feeling of stepping through this portal was like nothing he'd ever felt before. It was a little bit nauseating but he quickly recovered from his initial sensations of illness and re-stabilized.

Looking around, he was happy to see the Bastion. In fact, he was beginning to feel properly at home and a weight lifted from his shoulders as he took in the more familiar surroundings.

"I...feel so glad to be here. I feel like this is home. There's nothing better than coming home after something awful's happened."

He turned to look at Blitz.

"I believe before I do anything else, I would like to sleep. I could not properly rest in that hospital bed. After my rest we can begin to discuss what we should do for this leg but right now I can barely think. I will have Shoop and Morgan give me what help I require and perhaps join you for an evening meal if I wake in time."

The lean young man now realized that he was exhausted. Even Blitz's healing couldn't fully compensate for lost sleep.
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Blitz closed the portal behind Trevor after he stepped through and got a few steps from the portal itself. "You're likely feeling a wee bit of motion sickness, but don't worry, that'll pass soon enough. Your body's adjusting because you got to someplace your brain knows is very far from where you just were in only a few steps, which your brain and body think shouldn't be enough to get you there. I didn't so much warp you here so much as I did take the distance between here and there and shrink it down to a couple of steps for the few seconds it took us to walk through the portal. Though I'm smart enough to use machinery for it, so the machinery gets the backlash if anything goes wrong instead of anything living," Blitz pointed out. "I recall one mage experimenting with spatial magic and used it to cross the entire continent in a single step by compressing the distance with his magic temporarily, but he ended up in bed raving for a year afterward. Later, he wrote that all of his senses had gone dead from the magical backlash - he had essentially been entombed inside his own head, with no way to interact with the world around him or even perceive it. Spooky stuff. But also the reason I ran hundreds of tests before I even dared step through these things."

Trevor seemed sincerely glad to be back at the Bastion. "Glad being here puts you at ease, Trevor. I can relate on trying to relax for a bit after something terrible happens. I know I spent some time with my own family after I lost the arm, though admittedly a bit later than I perhaps should have."

"Not surprising that you couldn't rest properly," Blitz said. "Environment aside, supplies would likely demand that their beds be mass-produced, which means a slight drop in quality to some extent, though they would have to keep some level of comfort for bed-ridden patients."

"So go ahead, get some rest - once you've woken, we'll get started on your new leg." Blitz said, helping Trevor towards the door. Blitz left Morgan with Trevor - just in case he needed to contact Blitz quickly for some reason - and went off to step outside the front door, closing it behind him to not let the chill in, and enjoy the crisp, cold air outside the Bastion - part the reason he didn't mind living up here. That and no nosy neighbors.

As he waited outside, he spotted a creature moving in the nearby trees - a bear that had somehow seen fit to climb to the peak of the mountain, or had gotten very off-track pursuing its prey, as there were no animals that made their nests or dens this high up the mountain. Not that hadn't learned to keep their distance, anyway. The bear turned towards Blitz, flicked its ears slightly, then huffed and went to go marching off in another direction, but Blitz had cast a hand out and create a wall of shrapnel between the bear and the wyvern that had just dove to try and snatch it from the mountaintop. "I know you might be peckish, but you've got hunting grounds elsewhere, so let this one go - I'd rather not have a bloody corpse or bones left outside my house," Blitz said, glaring slightly at the wyvern, who snorted almost huffily and flapped off, the bear already gone as Blitz let the shrapnel fade.
Edited by Balmung6, Aug 12 2016, 03:08 AM.
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