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Archive for September 17, 2019

Busi Goes Blue (or How to be a Blue Mage in Eorzea) – Spell 1: Blood Drain [FFXIV Fanfic]

Summary: What can the magic of blue do for you? Well, for Cocobusi it offered a chance to become a mage like he’d always wanted. Even if it wasn’t the same magic that his brothers could use, it was still worth a shot… right?


Blood Drain

Two of the more commonly found creatures lurking the lands are the beastkin classified as Bats and vilekin known as Chigoe. They subsist on the lifeblood of others, taking in both nutrients and aether at once to fuel themselves. And as a Blue Mage, you can do the same with the spell: Blood Drain.

Contrary to its name, the caster doesn’t actually drain blood in the same manner as these species would do to those they prey upon. Instead, the spell simply rips the very aether from their bodies, contracting the aetheric channels to strangle the life from them in the process of depositing it right into your own inner reserves. No superstitious, vampiric urge to drink blood while frothing at the mouth involved.

Best of all, because it doesn’t rely on blood itself, it works on anything that possesses aether—making this rendition superior to the original.

The Whalaqee themselves ensure that all who use blue magic are capable of using this spell as both a means of weakening their quarry and keeping themselves able to cast their magic. Therefore, it should be a priority for you to do the same. As such I’ve catalogued the different species that one can learn this spell from in Eorzea and their locations as follows…

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The Blind Iron Mines were surprisingly well-lit as Cocobusi ventured into the cavern past the checkpoint leading from Middle La Noscea.

Getting past the checkpoint had presented a minor setback as the guards were a little wary of some of the items he had, as typically they were only in possession of adventurers. But he managed to get through by presenting his Alchemist’s Guild membership. All the same, he made a note to register with the Adventurer’s Guild before he went back home if his efforts today proved successful—if only to move about easier in the future.

Even so, reservation riddled the readied yet reserved blue mage as he finished going over the pages for the Blood Drain spell for a fifth time. The concept of the spell was simple enough to understand. It was meant to take aether from the foe and use it to fill the wellspring that was your own.

In a way it was similar to the Drain spell that his brothers taught to promising thaumaturges, stealing the very life of the foe and using it to mend physical wounds. He had also heard of an even more refined version used by Arcanists that combined both the aspects of taking the life and aether of the enemy. But, while Blood Drain was less refined than either of them, it was more or less the perfect spell for Cocobusi to acquire first…

At least if not for the unpleasantness associated with it when he remembered his brothers’ tale of what transpired with Mormo. He couldn’t recall what had happened after he opened the lid to the vessel that kept her bound, but he knew that the voidsent had committed many a mage to death. So great was her hunger for aether that she ripped it from their bodies in an effort to reconstitute her own until her physical form was obliterated entirely.

It was an unpleasant thought to know that he’d be willingly using a similar technique to fuel his ambitions once more. But he had no intention of becoming a monster like she had been. He only sought to wield blue magic for the sake of fixing the cruel quirk of fate that had befallen him and standing alongside his brothers—nothing more.

Of course, before he could ponder the potentially perilous path presented by the spell, he had to actually wrest it from the corpse of a Cave Bat.

It was a mostly passive beast from what he could gather. But that didn’t mean that he was confident that he could still best it alone, given his inexperience with this sort of thing. That was why he was in the middle of preparing a trap to tip the scales in his favor.

He poured the remaining contents of a still-warm bottle of Beastkin Blood he had bought with him onto a slab of Mutton Loin before he took shelter out of sight, clutching his cane with clammy hands and waiting for one to be drawn in by the scent. A Cave Bat eventually swooped in and lapped at the blood that had been spilled over it, sampling it and feeling the warmth of the meat that still lingered. He waited until the moment it bit down into the meat, fangs pressing deep until fluids came bubbling out and down its maw.

Then Cocobusi rushed in with a shout to psyche himself up. The Cave Bat broke from its meal at the sudden startle, glowing white eyes catching the motion of the cane as it was swung. Its wings carried it out of the reach of the initial, clumsy attempt. Then they abruptly started spasming and twitching, throwing its flight off before it could do anything else.

Just the results he expected when he laced the blood with a bottle of Weak Paralyzing Potion.

The Jellyfish Humors and Cnida all came from this region and were easy enough to procure, while he had the Quicksilver and the shards himself to use in crafting it. The blood didn’t congeal, masking the potion well enough to fool it into taking a bite. Cocobusi was sure the effects had been diluted, but it should be effective enough to hamper the Cave Bat’s fine motor control and stop it flying away for at least a few moments.

He took a second swing, using the cane like a bludgeon to thwack it with a meaty thump. But the Cave Bat was surprisingly resilient, given that after it whirled in the air for a moment it managed to correct its flight. Then it turned aggressive, chittering and fluttering around his subsequent attempts at hitting it again before swooping in and biting down on his arm.

The sting of the fangs piercing his new outfit and flesh, ripping into the arteries and capillaries beneath it, was something he could tolerate. What he couldn’t was the sensation that followed afterwards. There was a tug, an irresistible pull as it drew from both his circulatory and aetheric channels at once— it was using Blood Drain on him.

“Get off! Get off! Get off!” He slammed the cane into the Cave Bat over and over until he managed to knock it loose, widening the wound that stained the white and blue garments with a spot of crimson.

The Cave Bat screeched menacingly as its fangs that had been dyed with blood were revealed. The taste of sweet nourishment to be found within his flesh was too great a lure for it to flee now. It dove straight for his neck this time and ended up just short when Cocobusi brought his wounded arm up to protect his neck, catching him between his neck and shoulder to sup on his blood once more.

Whacking it with the cane did nothing to deter it as the Cave Bat threatened to suck his aetheric and cardiovascular channels dry, stirred into a frenzy of pain and hunger. If left alone, the Lalafell would soon be a withered husk stumbled upon by some adventurer or miner. Desperate, he dropped his stick reached into his pouch until his fingers found a wide-bodied bottle. He brought the cork to his mouth, popped it off, and then dumped the contents over the bat and the wound alike.

The moment the deep, inky fluid splashed down he felt the stinging sensation of the cnidas that were woven into the Weak Poison Potion piercing down as it took root in them both. The bloodthirsty beastkin’s devouring of his aether was stopped short as its muscles locked into place from the remnants of the paralysis. It gave him a chance to pull it free even as he felt his own arm suffering from the sensation of internal bleeding from the viper’s venom.

Cocobusi then hastily reached for an antidote, a slimmer-bodied bottle that he knew to be somewhere in there. Any good alchemist carried a bottle meant to counteract the potations they made on principle, a safety measure to avoid any unfortunate accidents in the workplace. In this case, he had just the one bottle and hastily guzzled it down before he chugged a Potion as well to quell the burning pain from the wound and staunch the flow of blood.

Afterwards, he scrabbled over the ground for his cane and used it to prop himself up before looking over to the Cave Bat. It was twitching on the ground, spitting out a mix of both its own blood and that it stole. The poison was working for now but, given enough time, its body would fight off the afflictions and become resistant to them. So, to be safe, Cocobusi doused it with another set of maleficent potions.

Then he watched as the two sets of baleful fluids ravaged its tiny form inside and out until the light of its eyes went out as it succumbed.

The alchemist breathed out a sigh of relief that he managed to kill it on his own. Sure, it wasn’t a glamourous way to end a battle. But it was no different than the teachings his brothers preached as Thaumaturges—strike when they couldn’t fight back and from a distance—so he’d like to believe they would be proud of him for that.

The fact that his soul crystal quivered and pulsed only served to reinforce that thought.

The violent, painful death that his cruel concoctions wrought had released the aether from its body when it was at an apex due to the nature of the battle. That aether resonated with his own as it flowed into him, an almost tangible sensation that left him feeling tingly, and the crystal had caught that… hopefully.

He still needed to test it on a living subject, but he had already used up two of the three bane potations that he made with the materials he had on hand. They were so unstable that he didn’t trust them to help him last long enough against another Cave Bat, and he couldn’t use Teleport due to his low levels of anima, which was why he took a ferry to get to Limsa in the first place—meaning he couldn’t get back if he got too hurt to walk.

So, he decided to retreat from the mines while he was still able to with the tainted mutton and made it back to Zephyr Drift around evening, as the sun was starting to set over the water. There were only largely passive beasts within the region, as the more aggressive or dangerous ones were often culled before they got closer to large cities. The perfect kind to practice casting his first spell on.

In this case, a Wharf Rat that had decided to try to eat the mutton that he’d left out as bait. The rodent was large, with a pair of teeth that tore into the meat eagerly to taste whether it was edible or not. Satisfied, it prepared to abscond with the morsel only for its muscles to begin to twitch violently as the last of the paralysis potion that he’d doused it with took hold.

It bought him time to try and cast the spell as he came out of hiding and focused on the rat.

The book said he needed to attune himself to the mind of the beasts to use their spells. That he had to resonate with it. Grasping at the soul crystal, he closed his eyes and tried to envision what would resonate with the aetherial traces within him. What drove the Cave Bat to use Blood Drain on a primitive level?

HUNGER.

That thought bubbled up from the recesses of his mind with suspicious ease, almost enticingly so. He could just envision that it was STARVING, wracked by a desire for nourishment that could only be found in the warm, flowing life blood. Yes, an INSATIABLE need that hollowed out its stomach and gnawed at it from the inside out.  It had to…

The crystal pulsated within his grasp as he concentrated on that feeling. That primal YEARNING, to gorge itself until it was full on the abundance of aether from whatever source it could. The CRAVING could only be quelled by supping on the essence of another and quench the gnawing void within. A FERVENT desire that only grew as pain and hostility left it with a desperate need for succor, to mend the wound and numb the pain.

He lacked the yearning for nourishment that it may have possessed, but there was a fervent desire that he could tie into it akin to an insatiable hunger. That instinctive, desperate urgency to fill in the void and match his brother’s arcane might. The only way to satisfy that desire was for him to… for him to…

TAKE IT!

His eyes shot open as he felt the aetheric reserves within him stir. A pinch of the little anima he possessed gave form to the azure crystals that spun around him, drawing in the ambient aether that had settled in the surrounding plants. The traces were formulated and gave rise to a spell to take its aether for his own.

The Wharf Rat’s twitching body abruptly jerked as motes of warmth-less light bundled together into orbs that burst from its body. The raw and distilled aetheric energy flew towards into Cocobusi’s compact frame, slipping past his clothes and flesh to take root in deeper inside. The concentration was so potent that he could feel as it ran through his own aetheric channels once the prisms faded and the spell came to an end.

I… I did it.” Looking down at his own hands that trembled, he found himself overcome with excitement and ended up jumping for joy. “I’m a mage now!”

Even if it wasn’t the arcane flames, crackling thunder, or frigid ice that his brothers could bring to bear, it was still a form of aetheric manipulation. It was still magic. He had surpassed the limitation that fate had put upon him and defied it to cast magic where he hadn’t been able to before.

His excitement was only cut short by the menacing squeaking of the Wharf Rat as it rose back up to its feet. Turning aggressive at the attack, it charged towards him with jagged teeth bared and ready to gnaw away at him, only to be knocked away as the fledgling mage hastily swung his cane around to before it could take a bite. It hit the ground with a thump and then stalled as paralyzing potion had yet to be purged entirely from its system.

Cocobusi reached out for that hunger and desire again while he had the chance to cast. He had to prove that it wasn’t just a fluke, a desire that only served to formulate the spell as the blue prisms circled him and drew in aether from the surroundings once more. It only took two seconds before the aether was properly shaped and the spell was cast.

The Wharf Rat’s death throe was audible as the pull of the spell violently collapsed the rodent’s aetheric channels. The magic ripped every last drop from its corpse, death offering up even that which had accumulated within it. The surge was so great that he felt as though his own channels were being pressed from the inside out and threatened to expand.

“I can’t wait to show my brothers…” He said giddily before trailing off after considering his progress to theirs. Even if he could use one spell, it still might not be enough to convince them otherwise that he should be like them. And they might have some reservations about using the same kind of magic as the lying voidsent that had possessed him for a time. “On second thought, maybe II should wait until I get a few more spells?”

Now that he knew for a fact that it worked, he could go out and seek the monsters he could learn spells from to build his repertoire. But, considering everything that happened, he would maybe start small and plan things out a little. He’d pay a visit to the Adventurer’s Guild come morning to see if he could gain any advice.

 


Busi Goes Blue (or How to be a Blue Mage in Eorzea) – An Excerpt from Martyn’s Guide to Blue Magic [FFXIV Fanfic]

Summary: What can the magic of blue do for you? Well, for Cocobusi it offered a chance to become a mage like he’d always wanted. Even if it wasn’t the same magic that his brothers could use, it was still worth a shot… right?


An Excerpt from Martyn’s Guide to Blue Magic

So, you’ve gone and picked up the Soul of the Blue Mage and Martyn’s Guide to Blue Magic, have you?

Congratulations, you’re now one of the few and proud members of this new school of magic. You had the bravery to step onto this path and will be rewarded with great power in the end. But before you can call forth and wield the might and magicks of the beasts roaming around Eorzea, you must know what makes this form of magic special, and what it can do for you that the other modern schools of magic can’t.

Blue Magic itself is a form of magic that comes from my research into the mystic arts of the Whalaquee, inhabitants of the New World who managed to create a form of spellcasting based off the wild creatures that prowl the plains and forests. Over centuries of facing off against the creatures as they brought their magicks to bear in self-defense, they gained the ability to make it their own. I was fortunate enough to have learned from the best of them and will now pass on these teachings to you through this book.

Now, surely you must think that such it requires an immense amount of training and massive inner reserves of aetheric energy in order to use such spells?

Well that’s where you’re wrong, my apprentice. While most modern schools of magic might demand such a thing, blue magic stems from a different principle. You might still need a little aether of your own to start up the spells, but by drawing in aether from the immediate surroundings, you can use spells even greater than one could imagine.

Now I’m sure that to some that might seem like the white or black magic of old, but the similarities end there. These near-extinct (and forbidden) magicks rely on connecting oneself to the world’s aetherial current, but blue magic simply borrows ambient aether from the local environment in the same manner that the beasts do and returns it once the spell has done its work. It’s not unlike Conjury taught in the Twelveswood and that’s not illegal, is it?

Best of all, since you aren’t using your inner aetheric reserves to form the spells, you don’t have to worry about the complex relationship of aetheric balancing and efficiency like they teach in the Ossuary in Ul’dah. If you want to cast fire spells all day you can do so with no risk of burning yourself inside-out from over-aspecting or anything else.

So now that you know the skies are the limit for blue magic, you’ll surely be wondering how to learn the spells that you’ll be adding to your arsenal. Will you need to study from countless theurgical tomes and recite ancient incantations? Spend hours meditating and begging the elementals to let you borrow their power? Memorize complicated arcane patterns and geometries to shape the spells?

Of course not! Part of what makes blue magic wonderful is that it’s the simplest form of magic to use since you don’t need to do anything like that. All you need is one of my specialized focuses and a brand-new soul crystal.

As you might know, soul crystals are designed to store an echo of the user’s memories and allow future holders to learn from them. Well, thanks to my time in studying the arcanum, I’ve created a rune that allows for the soul crystal to formulate the memories of various creatures into spells instead. While not all of the local wildlife possesses the necessary aetherial composition to be engraved properly into it, you’ll find a list of those that can and their habitats in the pages of this spellbook.

As for actually learning the spells, you need to be either the target of the ability being used or close to it with the soul crystal present.

The mere threat of combat increases the flow of aetheric energies flowing throughout the beast’s inner channels and thus the instinctual patterns that it uses to weave the magic will permeate it to a certain degree. Then, once you vanquish the beast, that aether will be dispersed and you’ll absorb some of it into yourself by proximity. If that aether has the residual pattern within it, it’ll be stored and transcribed in the crystal as a spell for you to use.

Simple right?

Well, casting the spell is even simpler. You just need to attune yourself to the instincts of the beast and the crystal will formulate the spell from the stored knowledge, allowing you to use aether in a similar manner to the beast. That’s all it takes.

You don’t need to meditate on raising the potency of the elements to shape the spell like Conjurers do with their unworked wands and canes.

You don’t need to use speak a string of hard to remember words in the heat of battle and worry about ending up in a grave from biting your tongue like Thaumaturges.

You don’t even have to lug around a heavy book filled with complicated scribblings, written in enchanted ink and tipped with an expensive gemstone, and worry about the little creatures you call forth getting distracted while you’re in the middle of pitched combat like many Arcanists do.

So now that you know what blue can do for you, it’s time to start your acquisition of spells until you swell with the power to rival even the greatest of spellcasters.

Go forth and make your mark upon the world as a Blue Mage.

Sincerely,

Martyn

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Peering down at the pages of the book from his room at the Mizzenmast Inn of Limsa Lominsa, Cocobusi found himself intrigued by the prospect of this new form of magic. So much so that his legs swung back and forth while he sat on the edge of the chair, his linen robes rustling in excitement. The discovery had been more than he expected when he joined the caravan to come to the seaside city-state. There had been a request for a member of the Alchemist Guild in the crafting of a grimoire and he had volunteered for a number of reasons.

The first was because he wanted to have a chance to learn of this city-state’s most common form of spellcasting, done through tomes and ink laced with pigments of metals that were conductors of aether. That made it much easier using gemstones and geometries, the two things that defined their school of magic. Unfortunately, since it relied on one’s inherent anima, practicing it held the same risk as with his brothers’ magic.

Then he had come for supplies to work on improving his potion, since the materials he needed weren’t easily procured in Ul’dah. The prices for getting them imported was far too expensive on his current budget. Especially since he had just saved up enough to purchase a Mythril Mortar, which he hoped would help him push past his current progress with the addition of a crafting materia.

It was by chance that he had come across the Blue Mage. After witnessing his demonstration and hearing his explanation, the alchemist couldn’t help but be drawn in by the opportunity it presented. Even though it cost him all the gil he’d saved towards getting his new mortar, he couldn’t pass up the chance to finally use magic.

Though his brothers had assured him that they appreciated what he could do as an alchemist, the desire to weave spells still thrummed in his very core. But his conundrum was that he lacked the excess reserves of anima needed to use the same arcane arts as his brothers, a quirk of fate that was cruel in itself. In Blue Magic, however, he saw a fortuitous chance to challenge that fate itself.

The aether from living beings flowed out and tended to return to the other realm upon death, but the more violent and sudden the death, the more frantic the process. And one’s own aether could be stained by it, though the effects were so miniscule that it would be unnoticed given that one’s inner reserves were often greater—a soluble within a solvent. But if the Soul Crystal could capture the essence that was diluted in oneself as the body absorbed it and somehow reconstruct it when the caster attuned themselves to it…

It was possible for it to work. And if the majority of the aether was drawn from the surroundings rather than one’s anima, the costs of using the spells themselves would be lower. Low enough to where he could perhaps use a spell without the risk it would pose to his life.

Then, one day, maybe he could even stand alongside his siblings.

Flipping through the pages to see the potential spells he could learn, he noticed how they were ranked based on a star-system from easiest to obtain to hardest, including some theoretical ones like the primals. There were a few beasts he could go after while he was in the region, so he marked the first of his prey. Then he turned back to his tools, since he had just enough materials on-hand to make some things useful enough to see the job done.

By this time tomorrow, he would have his first spell.