Busi Goes Blue (or How to be a Blue Mage in Eorzea) – Spell 3: Bomb Toss [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?
To the nascent Blue Mage, one might be surprised to learn that it is possible to gain Blue Magic that allows one to aetherially replicate the functionality of mechanical devices. For example, take the explosives frequently favored by Goblins for the fiery punch they pack. Through the same means of acquisition used to obtain other spells, you can gain access to the ability to chuck similar explosives with the aptly named spell: Bomb Toss.
Now, it may seem strange that one of the Spoken races are capable of granting Blue Magic as monsters would upon death. But keep in mind that one’s aether contains not only the force of one’s life, but has the experiences and memories imprinted upon them. For Goblins, whom are often taught to create their preferred explosives through magically enhanced gunpowder at a young age, it would be nearly instinctive.
Now, while Goblins can be found all over Eorzea, different tribes of Goblins use different methods. Those that attune best to the Soul Crystal are those commonly found in Middle La Noscea, though a particularly lawless cadre of goblins belonging to their tribe have been seen in the Twelveswood…
“Ahhh!” Cocobusi shouted in alarm as he rushed towards a large, outcropped boulder. His tiny legs worked themselves at a frantic pace to reach the stout stone before he dove behind it. Then he huddled over and braced himself as a moment later the explosions rang out.
BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!
The goblin explosives tore the ground on the other side of his cover apart with surprising force. Soil and burned grass pelted his hat as they rained down, blasted up by the concussive force hidden within the tiny bombs. He could feel his teeth rattling as he brushed it off while shooting a glance to other person taking shelter behind the boulder.
The Lalafell whose name he never did get was huddled over, clutching her Weathered Grimoire overhead to stop any pebbles from hitting her in the head. She felt the weight of his stare upon her and pouted. “This isn’t my fault!”
“Never said it was.” At least not out loud anyway. The job in itself was supposed to be simple. A group of Goblins had apparently robbed a merchant caravan and stolen a crate of cheeses that had been meant for the Culinarian Guild. But because her familiar jumped the gun their attempt to get back the crate without being caught went poorly, to say the least.
“You no take cheese!” the Goblin barked. “Cheese belong to Goblins! Not uppity uplanders.”
“That cheese doesn’t belong to you!” Cocobusi shouted back, peeking over the edge of the rock. Even though he said that, he could see that the three Goblins were still getting ready to cart their stolen goods away. He turned back to the Arcanist and spotted her drawing on the pages of her grimoire once more. “They’re going to get away at this rate.”
“Then do something!” She glared up from getting ready to summon her Carbuncle only for her eyes to go wide as she pointed behind him. “Look out!”
He whipped his head around to see that one of the Goblins was there, having broken from their group in order to try and stab him with a knife. Cocobusi immediately threw himself to the side as it stabbed at him, only for a Ruin spell to slam into the Goblin and knock it back. He followed up by reaching out with his Blood Drain spell and proceeded to rip the aether out of its body, leaving the Goblin to jerk violently and shudder.
But it didn’t kill it. The Goblin instead gripped its knife tighter and attempted to slash with it, cutting into his arm and drawing blood as he drew back and instead whacked the Goblin with his cane as if it were a club. The Goblin’s head whipped around before another Ruin spell burst against its body and it went still, knife flopping out of its hand.
Cocobusi sucked in a sharp breath at the wound. It stung but he could manage for now. So, he looked around to the other side of the boulder to see they were beginning to move with the stolen crate. “We have to go now, or we’ll lose them.”
“Done!” She shouted, ripping the page out of her Weathered Grimoire and using it to call forth her Carbuncle. “Go fetch the Goblins!”
It gave her a curious tilt of the head before looking off towards the fallen Goblin.
“The other ones,” she clarified, pointing off towards the pair. It deigned to listen to her this time, making an aggressive squeak before it darted off. The Arcanist then turned to him and gestured for him to follow. “Come on!”
He broke from his cover as the Emerald Carbuncle drew upon the winds as it darted forward, squealing before it let fly a Backdraft that knocked one of the remaining two Goblins away from the crate and leaving the other to drop it. The Carbuncle then moved to attack, leaving the last one to glare at them through its mask as it pulled out another bomb.
“Not this time!” Cocobusi said as the azure diamonds encircled him. Aether gathered in his mouth until his cheeks were bulging, before he spat out an aetherial Sticky Tongue that latched onto the final Goblin and snapped him forward until he was pinned to the ground in front of Cocobusi, the adhesive fluids leaving him trapped…along with the bomb. “Gah!”
He turned to book it as far from the Goblin as he could—
—and barely made it out of the death radius of the explosion as the diminished force of it sent him sprawling into the dirt. He came to a tumbling stop, his small body left prone on the ground and a small moan of pain slipping out of his mouth. Along with a slight quiver in his pocket. “I… did… it…”
“If by that you mean nearly blow yourself up, you did an adequate job.” The Arcanist’s voice rang out from somewhere close-by. He barely managed to turn his head from the dirt to see her hovering over him with book outstretched, magic in the work. “Hold still.”
He felt the broken skin and battered cells begin to rebuild themselves, his body mending and the pain dying. His strength returned, allowing him to get back up to his feet slowly. He dusted himself off, noting that his garments were in need of a mender, and then thanked her. “Thanks.”
She turned her nose up to him. “It wouldn’t look good if you got yourself killed on such a simple job. Speaking of which, what kind of disgusting spell was that? It reminded me an awful lot of those slimy toads we had to contend with.”
“That’s because it’s a Blue Magic spell derived from them,” he explained, pulling out the Soul Crystal to show her. “Unlike my brothers, I can’t use thaumaturgy because I don’t have enough anima to use spells from most of the other schools of magic. But I discovered that I can use Blue Magic to copy the spells of monsters, due to the fact that it costs so little of my own anima as long as I have a Soul Crystal.”
She looked at the crystal with skeptical eyes as she processed the information. “That sounds like rubbish to me.”
“I’ll show you,” he closed his eyes and tightened his fingers around the Soul Crystal. “Just now, I felt it quiver when that Goblin got caught in his own explosion. That should mean I can use the Bomb Toss spell once I attune it…”
What was the Goblin’s reasoning for creating their bombs? It was a weapon, of course. One refined through experimentation and effort that spanned a vast swathe of time, a product born from their intellect. For those who carried every aspect of their lives on their backs, they needed a way to defend themselves from those that would take their precious treasures despite their lack of strength.
And so the Goblins turned to the crafting of explosives.
Even though he didn’t know the composition, as that was a heavily guarded Goblin secret, he could imagine steady hands delicately mixing aetheric sand, fire crystals, and gunpowder into the perfect blend. It had to be done slowly, carefully, a bit at a time—oxidizer, fuel, binder, all packed into a small ball that would give way to a very big…
The Soul Crystal began to pulsate within his grasp as the envisioned scenario resonated with the memories that were imbued within the aether traces that had been absorbed upon the Goblin’s death. The azure crystals encircled him, spinning as they took aether from their surroundings and gave shape to that memory. It felt hot, a steadily growing heat pooling in his empty palm and being overlaid with a shell, until he finally felt a bomb was in his grasp.
“See!” He opened his eyes as he held it out to show her, only to see her backside as she ran away from the bomb replica… which had a steadily shrinking lit fuse. Panic set in for a brief moment before he tossed it behind him and started booking it in the opposite direction.
Fortunately for him, he was actually out of the blast radius this time. He only ended up with a gracious amount of dirt and burnt grass pelting him as they rained down from the blast spout. “Whew… that was dangerous.”
“That is an understatement!” She came back over, lips framed in a pout. “There’s a reason using magic requires years of study. If any layman could simply use spells without proper guidance, they could easily hurt someone. Whoever gave you that Soul Crystal was so irresponsible that they ought to be arrested!”
“That’s a bit excessive,” he murmured. Though, he would admit that the book didn’t note that the fuse would be actively lit. That was an oversight. “Anyway, thanks to that now I’ve got three spells that I can use, and we finished the quest. So, all’s well that ends well, right?”
She only huffed. “I am going to inspect the cargo and make sure that it wasn’t damaged. Then you can help me cart it back.”
He watched as she went back to the crate while her carbuncle just curiously stayed behind and gave him an inquiring look. Then she let out a small yelp and began to sway on her feet. She attempted to stagger away from the crate before collapsing onto the ground, leaving the arcane entity to vanish as well.
“What’s wrong?” Cocobusi moved to check on her before the scent wafting from the open crate hit him like a brick and he began to stagger as well. That when he noticed that wind crystals on the underside of the crate lid had been used to keep the odor contained within the crate, as what was inside was several blocks of hard-yellow cheese, threaded with blue-green mold. He fought against the nausea and held his breath, barely managing to get the top back on, before he slumped down against the crate as well.
Before the scent clinging to his nose could overwhelm his small mass as it did hers, he reached into his pouch and grabbed some liquid Smelling Salts. The scent of it was pungent and powerful as he popped the cork, but it was still better than what his nose had the horror of smelling just now. He soaked a cloth with it and tied it around his mouth and nose to eventually wash it away while the stimulant kept him alert.
Then he did the same for the unconscious Arcanist and they both carried the crate back to Limsa Lominsa.
The Bismarck would find few brave enough to try Goblin Cheese Cuisine in the future.