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Author Topic: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}  (Read 85 times)

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Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« on: October 07, 2017, 02:05:01 PM »
Gwyndolenn looked into the mirror of her apartment, once again tying her black hair in a thick braid. It was her signature look when she was on duty, but this time was different. She was off-duty and just simply wanted to go for a flight. Her dragon, Vendremdirr, was a piece of work, but he loved their partnership almost as much as she did. Anyone who knew the dragon before their partnership was more than surprised when they became a team, as Ven was far from what one would want in a dragon. Still, they took to each other immediately and haven't looked back.

She dressed herself in the flight suit, complete with breathing apparatus, then started to the nearest aerie. The black dragon was sitting there patiently, his metallic tail curve around him and his chest proudly extended.

Gwyn, he said telepathically with a slight nod, acknowledging her with the correct amount of respect. He was absolutely able to regard her with disrespect because of the dragons' societal rank being higher than the Pilots', but he wouldn't disrespect her as long as she didn't disrespect him.

"Ven," she said, smirking and walking over to him, "thank you for doing this. I know we're off-duty, but-"

Off-duty is boring, he said, interrupting her. He stood up, his large wings extended. He was a prideful dragon, but it was well-earned. The two of them really reflected each other's personalities, sometimes literally, as they were about to see.

Taking off in flight, Gwyn starting casting spells that manipulated the light around them. She had already practically mastered her gift, but a good researcher knew no one ever really stopped learning. The light she bent bounced off of Ven's silver back, as well as the silver armor along his underside. It was an interesting combination, as the two of them using that particular spell could create a spotlight for hunting others down. Illumnokinesis was a rare gift, so Gwyn made a career for herself by studying her own power, though that was definitely not the easiest thing to do. Still, the more she could learn, the better everyone would understand it.

Offline Arany

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2017, 08:51:28 AM »
When Priya was accepted into the piloting program and officially gained her title as Pilot Cardinal, she knew that the chances of being assigned an illumokinetic mentor were close to non-existent. She had been continously told that the rarity of her illumokinetic powers made her extremely valuable to Aedolis' military but that it came with the cost that only a few could teach her how to master her psionic powers. Because of this, Priya was very surprised when she one day was presented with the name Gwyndolenn Achetiorr; a Pilot Royal who she was told were one of the most talented illumokinetics in the military, as well as a fitting tutor.

She was sent to talk to Gwyndolenn in person, for some reason. Priya found it rather strange that the higher-ups couldn't simply call the Pilot Royal in while they both were on duty, but the young pilot knew better than to question the elders' decisions. But even though she told herself that she didn't mind it, Priya found herself a bit embarrassed about having to present herself to the more skilled pilot. While she would consider herself rather skilled in both telepathy and telekinesis, as well as perfectly capable of piloting her dragon, she knew that her illumokinetic powers weren't exactly something to write home about. Therefore, she couldn't help but worry that she would be nothing but a bother to someone as valuable as Gwyndolenn; a highly skilled pilot who also mastered a rare and sought-after psionic power.

Priya, Naja's stern voice interrupted her thoughts, nearly making the female jump in surprise, I can sense you're overthinking things again.

"My apologies,", Priya replied, hoping her dragon wouldn't pick up on the embarrassment in her tone, yet also knowing that she definitely would. After heaving a heavy sigh, Priya closed her eyes and let the worrying thoughts wash away. "I seem to be more nervous than expected."

Naja's reply was merely an amused huff of air; the electric blue serpentine gently bumping Priya's shoulder as she buzzed in laughter. While it was a small gesture, the display of friendship admittedly eased Priya's nerves just a bit. Despite everything, she knew that her dragon had her back. They were relatively newly bonded, yet Priya still felt an extreme ease in the serpentine's mere presence. Must be the power of the bond, she thought.

Naja was guiding the two of them through Haviah, utilizing powers unknown to Priya in order to search for the other duo. It hadn't been much of a fruitful search until a light suddenly twinkled by them and Naja immediately alerted her pilot by nudging her head up towards the sky. There, a dragon was practically dancing through air, the light around it bending and reflecting off in angles it supposedly shouldn't, which resulted in a rather amazing sight.

That must be them. Let's make sure we're there to meet them when they land, Naja said as she set off towards what Priya supposed was a hangar of some sorts. Even though she obediently followed her dragon, she admittedly had a hard time tearing her eyes away from the spectacular display overhead.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2017, 08:30:39 AM by Arany »

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2017, 03:10:10 PM »
We have an audience, Ven said, glancing downward. He was usually so focused on their aerials, but Gwyn was able to sense something was off with the great beast. Ven blew a small puff of smoke from his nostrils, something he only did when he was agitated.

"In that case, we should probably call it a day with the tricks. Still have about three hours before we go on-duty." Gwyn knew better than to push her partner, as he turned into a cranky old man when he was tired or overworked. She stopped the light performance, holding onto his harness as he turned sharply and dove in a steep path back towards the aerie from which they had taken off. "How'd you know we were being watched?"

All she needed was him giving her a dumb look for her to shut up and smirk at her own thoughtlessness.

His speed was incredible for a dragon of his size. Gwyn had her feet firmly inside the stirrups of the harness, while she held on for dear life. Thankfully, the flight suit's helmet with built-in oxygen allowed for her to breathe and see the entire way. Without the suit's amenities, piloting dragons would be nearly impossible. She had no idea how the people all those years ago did it without suffocating.

With a sudden change of direction, Vendremdirr turned his body upward, his massive wings pushing against the air to slow the dive. They hovered above the aerie, as Ven eased himself onto the platform. His legs touched first, then his arms, then his large wings folded against his body. He sat with his tail curved around him and nodded his head at the blue dragon, briefly closing his eyes. Naja, he said telepathically, acknowledging her presence.

Dragons were much more respectful towards their kin than they were towards the humans. Gwyn being an Elf made it easier for Ven to give her the respect she deserved, as Elves were usually a slightly superior race to humans, though they almost never showed it. Gwyn especially treated no other race differently; her favor was gained through merit and respect.

She hopped off of the dragon's silver back and stood right next to him, disconnecting the oxygen mask and taking off her helmet. Her black hair was slightly longer than her shoulders when she let it loose, which was why she always kept it braided on-duty. The braid helped to make it appear like her hair was shorter. The Elf rested her helmet on her right hip under her arm, and she smirked, looking the young lady up and down.

"This them?" She asked, looking at Ven. The dragon smirked and nodded twice. He never was the most chatty around others, so Gwyn didn't question him. She tucked a few stray hairs behind her pointed ear and nodded at the girl with a slight sparkle in her eye. "Enjoy the show?"

Offline Arany

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2017, 09:23:08 AM »
Seeing the Pilot Royal and her dragon land onto the platform was a display of grace the likes of which Priya had never seen before. She could only imagine how dumb she must have looked with her mouth practically hanging open as she watched the pair land; their synchronization so perfect it could only be the result of years of training. Despite having seen many pilots and their dragons fly together through her life, Priya had yet to see a illumokinetic of this skill before and it was every bit awe-inspiring as she had hoped it would be. In fact, Priya found the two so awe-inspiring that it wasn’t until Naja used the tip of her tail to swat at Priya’s back that the Pilot Cardinal startled awake and scrambled to regain her posture. Despite the flush on her face, she did her best to square her shoulders, stand upright and pretend not to hear the huffs of laughter her dragon was emitting due to her pilot’s fluster.

When the older and much larger dragon that just had landed in front of them came to a rest, Naja was quick to do the same. Her serpentine body curled in on itself as she laid down comfortably, still regarding her pilot as she did so. With an expression that Priya knew to be serene, Naja telepathically returned the greeting with a small smile on her face. Vendremdirr, please excuse our interruption, she said, seemingly at ease in the other dragons presence. While Naja had never been much of a socializer, especially not with dragons of her own rank, she always seemed to enjoy the presence of her elders.
 
Priya, who also recognized the other dragon's superior rank, gave him a court nod of respect before turning to the elven illumokinetic and attempted to contain her excitement in order to remain calm and collected as she lowered her head in a sign of respect.

”An excellent performance,” she responded, entirely truthfully. After a brief glance towards Naja, who nodded encouragingly in return, Priya turned to the other Pilot and began to speak.

”I- apologize for intruding while you're off duty. I'm Pilot Cardinal Priya Sanyal, third-tier psionic. Illumokinetic." she said, unsure whether an handshake was in order but ultimately decided to remain standing at (an albeit insecure) attention. "I have been told you're somewhat of the best at what you do."

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2017, 10:09:13 AM »
Gwyn smiled at the girl, who exuded excitement and nervous energy at the same time. She remembered being in Priya's shoes; a young Pilot with her whole future ahead, looking for someone to help her along. Unfortunately, she didn't have anyone to explain her particular psionic to her, so Gwyn had to figure it out on her own.

Observing the relationship between the young Pilot and dragon was important to Gwyn. Since her bond with Vendremdirr was so strong, she held much less respect for Pilots who had a weak partnership with their dragons. Priya and Naja appeared to be close, so that definitely gained the girl some favor in the Elf's golden eyes.

She actually enjoyed Priya's embarrassment to a certain degree. It meant that she understood her rank in the Pilot Program, as well as Gwyn's, so there should be very little clouded judgement on either one of their parts. "Relax, kid," Gwyn said calmly. She was far from the woman who would be snobbish to someone because of their lower rank. "And thank you."

She looked at Ven, who kept his pride and power known to the three of them. "It's probably better that you came off-duty because this one gets moody when he's tired." Ven puffed smoke towards her, and Gwyn quickly put the breath mask over her nose and mouth with a glare. She flipped him off, and he smirked. The smoke dissipated, and Gwyn turned her attention back to Priya.

"Pilot Cardinal Priya Sanyal, you've been told correctly. Pilot Royal Gwyndolenn Achetiorr at your service. On-duty, I expect you to address me as Pilot Achetiorr, as required by rule of rank. Off-duty, don't worry about it. Call me Gwyn." She glanced at the dragons and grinned. "As long as you don't get on his nerves, I guarantee you won't get on mine. I'm assuming you were given my name because of my psionic tier." She raised her left hand and wiggled her fingers, light dancing between them. "And if you're only seeking me out now, is it also safe to assume you made it through the Candidate Program like I did? No mentor?"

Offline Arany

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2017, 12:15:16 PM »
Priya always enjoyed watching a pilot interact with their dragon. There was something about it that was so extremely trivial, yet at the same time so intimate, it made Priya feel like she could already tell a lot about the duo. She had seen everything from pairs who knew each other so well that they needed no words in order to communicate, pairs who were so close they could chat on endlessly, but also pairs that barely spoke to each other off-duty.

The bond between Gwendolyn and her dragon seemed like it was built on both respect, a good chemistry and also a fondness of sort- three qualities which Priya hoped to form with her own dragon. Her mouth twitched upward in a brief smile as she observed the other two, easing up on her strict posture as the other pilot told her to do so.

”Yes, that is correct. There were no illumokinetic mentors available. ” she answered, thinking back on her candidate days. Since it took her so long to graduate, those days weren’t long ago, yet it still felt like she and Naja had been bonded for years. She never formed any bonds through her training and was always slightly jealous of those candidate who had formed tight relationships with their mentors. Since she had no real mentor, she never got the support and help other young psionic got. ”But… I’m beginning to think I might need one.”

Watching the other play with the light made Priya feel a familiar buzzing in the tips of her fingers, running through her entire body like a chill. Yet when she tried to concentrate the power it in her hand it manifested as nothing bigger than a small orb, which quickly fizzed out once Priya clenched her hand into a fist.
"I… struggle. With the light.” she confessed, her gaze self-conciously straying to the floor as she spoke, ”I got through the candidacy eventually but I fear I won’t be able to climb the ranks if I don’t start developing soon."

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2017, 01:05:45 PM »
"Okay," Gwyn said, raising a finger. "First, you don't need to be a powerful psychic to advance. I won't say that doesn't help, but you could very well be Pilot Imperial one day without advancing at all in your psionic ability. Climbing the ranks has very little to do with psionic ability. You just have to want it badly enough."

She smirked at the girl, whose confidence didn't seem to be the strongest when around her superiors.

"And two," she said, putting up another finger, "we definitely have to work on your authority before anything else. You're young, inexperienced, and from what I can tell, brand new to the politics of being a Pilot. You gotta make everyone else believe that's not true. The strength and confidence that you put out there, even if it's faked, will be exactly how the public sees you."

 Gwyn advanced through the ranks as quickly as she did simply because she knew how to play the game. Pilots were famous and respected above anyone else, so she learned quickly. As a Candidate, she kept her head down and only associated with her peers, sometimes not even them. The only friend she had was Vendremdirr for the last year and a half of the program. That's why she was never assigned a mentor. She didn't want to stick out, and a psionic like illumnokinesis isn't exactly common.

Once she was officially named a Pilot, everything changed. Gwyn made sure everyone knew her name. She maintained a perfect record with stellar performance in every mission to which she was assigned. She had only encountered two other illumnokinetics, but neither were too friendly, which made her glad she wasn't assigned a mentor as a Candidate. At least with Priya, she was already out of the Candidate Program, so she had the choice of whether or not to stick with Gwyn as a mentor.

She looked at the black dragon, who was watching with a slight smile. As much as he tried to hide it, Ven took pride in hearing Gwyn speak about being a Pilot. When she spoke on the subject, her voice was filled with passion and honor. She never forgets the value of being a Pilot, as well as what the Pilots are supposed to represent to Aedolis.

Go, he said to Gwyn. She looked back, and he nodded. We have time.

Turning back to Priya, Gwyn shrugged. "Where would you like to start?"

Offline Arany

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2017, 03:17:24 PM »
Priya immediately began to take notes and correct herself in accordance to Gwyndolenn’s remarks, nodding along fervently as the other spoke. The younger pilot tried to shake off any visible insecurities and correct her posture; anything just to come across as more confident than she actually felt. It was good advice. She could say she knew that from experience as well, because heaven knows if she would have made it through training if she didn’t have a knack for looking entirely un-bothered by most things.

”I do want it,” Priya insisted, passion painting her words. ”and don’t get me wrong. I do truly believe that I am a capable illumokinetic. It’s just-”

The pilot interrupted herself, taking a moment to find the correct words to convey her feelings. Or maybe trying to distinguish exactly what she was feeling. She wasn’t used to expressing emotions this strongly, especially not to strangers. But she was now more than ever convinced that she wanted this opportunity, needed this opportunity, and she would be damned if she didn’t at least try to make herself heard.

”I guess I just want to know how you did it, if that makes sense,” she said, almost quietly. Priya had always taken pride in being an eloquent person, with precise formulations and an ice-cold facade, but it was hard to maintain that persona when her will and emotions were this strong. It felt raw and honest in a way that Priya couldn’t determine she thought felt liberating or was just plain uncomfortable. ”How you graduated so fast, climbed the ranks- how you bend light like you just did. Maybe knowing these things is a good start."

When she smiled at the other pilot it felt awkward and strained, very much so. In fact, she would be surprised if it didn't show clearly on the expression on her face that smiling wasn't really her forte. It wasn't really a mystery why, considering how rarely she smiled nowadays. Yet Priya couldn't in all honesty claim that it didn't feel a bit good. In fact, it almost felt... nice. She decided that faked or not- it was a start.
« Last Edit: October 11, 2017, 03:17:55 PM by Arany »

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2017, 06:39:40 PM »
Gwyn smirked at the girl's change in demeanor. It was good. If she was taking the advice in private, she would more than likely do so in public. When Priya said that wanted to excel, Gwyn felt her heart quicken. Gwyn was relatively new to the Pilot Royal title, even though she wore it like she had been born with it, so the excitement and determination Priya was showing over raising her status was still fresh in the Elf's mind.

"I like your confidence," Gwyn said. It was a strange thing to compliment, considering she had just criticized Priya's lack of authority. "You're determined, but humble. Good. Don't lose that."

Watching other Pilots rise through the ranks had shown Gwyn too many times how genuinely kind people could lose their compassion and humility simply because of the new authority they were given. It was what made her so determined to hold onto her playful spirit and humble view.

"How I climbed the ranks?" Gwyn said, a slight shocked tone in her voice. "Okay, kid. Walk with me. I'll tell you a little story." She started walking off the aerie, back towards the Pilots' apartments. Ven would be fine on his own until their shift started.

"By the time I was sixteen, I wanted out of the Candidate Program more than I wanted to be a Pilot. I was lucky, because the first day of my training in Stage 5, we went to meet the dragons. I saw Vendremdirr, and he saw me. There was an instant connection and it only grew stronger each time we saw each other. It was obvious to everyone that he had chosen me, but I had to wait until I was eighteen to officially graduate.

"Once that happened, my new goal was excel. Plain and simple. I wanted people to know my name. The fact that I have a rare psionic helped in that aspect. As a whole, we know very little about illumnokinesis, which is the exact reason I became a researcher. What better way is there to study something than to actually be able to do it? My data collection is actually what helped me to improve my abilities. Every time I pushed myself, I learned something new. Then, I learned how to control it. It's a chain reaction, really. Desire to learn leads to experimentation; experimentation leads to control; control leads to skill; skill leads to mastery; mastery leads to advancement.

"In order to master your ability, you can't be afraid of pushing it too far. Hell, when I was testing my limits when it comes to manipulating color, I actually damaged one of my best friend's sight. He was helping me with the experiment, and now he's completely colorblind. When it comes to experimenting, I've turned my home into a safe place. If you ever need somewhere to practice without risk of messing someone up permanently, come to me, and I'll help you hone your skill. If you dedicate yourself, you'll be awesome."

She meant it. All it took to excel in illumnokinesis was a lot of persistence and even more screw ups!

Offline Arany

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2017, 02:55:23 PM »
As Gwyndolenn gestured for Priya to follow her, the younger pilot’s first instinct was to look towards her dragon. While she found it hard to contain her eagerness on getting started, she still wanted validation from her superior before leaving her behind. Naja, who mostly looked pleased to be left in her current position, responded only by a warm smile and an encouraging nod. After returning the smile, Priya hurried her steps in order to catch up with the elf.

Listening to Gwyndolenn tell the story of her way through the candidacy did nothing but increase Priya’s wide-eyed admiration of the other. The fact that she was able to pass through the stages so quickly said a lot about Gwendolyn’s skills and perseverance: especially as an illumokinetic without mentor. Priya herself had spent years in Stage 4, doing her everything in order to develop and control her psychic abilities without actually being told how she did this. It was frustrating and honestly very horrifying- the threat of getting sent to TRIM always a thought that was present in the back her head.

”You’re in science and research,” Priya noted, more a realization of her own than an actual statement. She herself hadn’t chosen a department yet, but found the DoSaR to be one of the nobler choices, so she nodded along approvingly as Gwendolyn described her work with her powers as well as with her data. There was something about the way the other spoke- proud and entirely confident in her abilities, yet still excited about every new possibility- that managed to spur on Priya further. It was motivational and well-put, almost enough to make the young pilot question whether the other was actually more fit to be a candidate mentor than anything else. 

”I really wish to push my limits- to research myself in the way you describe in order to learn new things about us and our powers.” Priya said, this time with a soft smile gracing her face. ”Perhaps we can make it so that all future illumokinetic candidates won’t be entirely left to their own devices."

Re: Studying a Student {Private: Arany}
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2017, 12:47:21 PM »
"It's not an easy thing to do," Gwyn said with a shrug. "But it's why I do what I do."

If that wasn't the understatement of the century! The Elf took out her hair, which fell below her shoulders when loose. She knew that it technically wasn't allowed, but given her rank and reputation, most people turned a blind eye. Not to mention, she was off-duty. On-duty, her entire personality shifted, as well as her hairstyle.

They made their way through the building towards Gwyn's apartment. Before getting started, Gwyn wanted to show Priya how the home turned into a laboratory. "I'm less science, more research," she said. "To be honest, science bores the crap out of me. I like studying the different psionic gifts, especially the rare ones. Illumnokinesis is obviously my favorite, but I have a friend who lets me study his electrogenesis. You might get to meet him someday."

Walking into her apartment, Gwyn placed her helmet in her shockingly shallow closet. The apartment was extremely under-decorated for how much space there was, only the necessities visible to the eye. This was probably surprising considering Pilot Royals were paid better than the rest. Every wall was painted a pale green, and there were absolutely no windows at all.

The living room contained a small television mounted on the wall, a thin couch with no removable cushions secured to the floor, a desk seemingly lifted a few inches from the ground and secured to the wall, and a chair that lacked legs attached to the desk. There was no dining room. The bathroom was a toilet, bath tub, and sink with no mirror. The kitchen had a mini fridge, stove, three cabinets, and a sink. The bedroom only had a cot that could have folded up against the wall, a bookcase full of books about Aedolis, a dresser, and a mirror.

Gwyn smiled, walking out of the apartment and looking at Priya. She glanced around the hall to make sure no one was there, then double-tapped the left side of the wall near her door. The walls and floors started to fold in on themselves, tucking into hidden compartments on either side. The entire apartment turned into a black laboratory with lights in the ceiling.

"This was a few years in the making," she said, glancing around again. "Look." Gwyn waved her hand over the spot on the wall she had tapped. The illusion vanished to reveal a glowing hexagon. She waved her hand over it again, and the shape seemed to vanish. "Just a little light manipulation to keep this a secret. It's not a big deal, but I wouldn't want my apartment flooded with people. Come on." She stepped inside and closed the door.

Meanwhile, Vendremdirr sat with Naja where he had landed. Priya is a good girl, he said to the other dragon. She has potential. What brought you together?