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Learning to Craft Tools [Profession/solo]

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Assignment Overview: Ari wants to make magical tools and there is no better place to learn than Magnostadt. Do the preliminary research.




Ariella had grown up in the City of Magic. She had held a wand from the moment she had shown an aptitude for magic and had done everything she could to improve her connection to the rukh since then. Her love of her gift made her want to expand on it in any way she could, including sharing it with people that normally could not sense the rukh enough to manage magic. She knew the only way to do this was through the use of Magic Tools and after seeing how Vin had reacted to learning to use one of her tools, she wanted to be able to do that for others. But, in order to do that, she would need to learn to make magic tools.

Magic Tools were incredibly useful and she understood how they worked, but she knew she needed more information on how to actually create the tools. Her home was almost as full of books as the Academy Library, so she began her search there. She searched through shelf after shelf of books before finding a whole section dedicated to her father’s research into making magical tools. Grabbing several, she moved to settle at the desk and opened the first book, scouring through until she found what she was looking for.

The book explained to her about the process of etching a magical circle first, requiring the use of a conduit. While it was not absolutely necessary, it did help ensure the magic circle was accurately drawn on the surface of the tool. After the circle came the runes, a series of commands that would be given to the rukh to determine what the tool did. Some tools were left fairly blank with only directions regarding which type of rukh were to be used, allowing a talented person to embed their own spell into the tool. However, most came with a very specific task to be performed.

She was well versed in the runes, at least those related to her own magical gifts. The runes for lightning were typically pretty simple, things like ‘strike’ or ‘paralyze.’ Life runes were infinitely more complex, due to the versatile nature of the magic type. Life typically encouraged growth, but what it was encouraging and how it encouraged it could be numberless. Luckily, the rune for ‘grow’ was a simple one and could be altered to numerous uses when added with other runes. There were several chapters on runes and their combination possibilities and Ari read through them tirelessly.

By the time Adius came searching for her for dinner, she had made it through three more books and was snoring, her head resting against a tome on fire runes that was in their father’s handwriting. Coming awake with a snort, Ari looked around before spotting Adius and giving him a sheepish grin. Her brother simply rolled his eyes and let her know dinner was ready before leaving her to clean up. Ari meticulously replaced the books to their places on the shelves, knowing that organization was important in a library full of magical texts. She knew her next step would be having to find someone familiar with making tools and beg them to let her watch the process.
[539/500]


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Assignment Overview: Ari has done her research and now gets to watch and help make a tool.




Ari had talked to Adius about which of the magic cool creators he would suggest trying to shadow and he had given her several names. She had finally gotten one to agree, a woman by the name of Shelke. Shelke specialized in the creation of life magic tools, preferring the healing aspects of the elements above anything else. She was a quiet woman, but extremely thorough in her explanations when she did speak. Ari followed the woman to the market as they searched for a variety of items that could be infused. Shelke seemed to prefer silver or gold items over any other type of metal, claiming it was easier to inscribe and work with.

They visited several stalls, each with a wide variety of jewelry, gems and weapons. Shelke picked through the items, meticulous in her examination of her piece she picked up. If there was any hint of a flaw, she immediately discarded it. Only the most finely crafted items would do. It would not be good to have the item break in the middle of using it, rendering it useless. She finally found several items that were to her satisfaction, one of them Ari’s suggestion. They made their way back to Shelke’s work area, a library filled to the brim with books with a large table in the middle, also covered in books.

Ari watched as Shelke did her personal preparations, clearing away the mess on the table and leaving only the relevant books before meditating. Ari joined her, focusing on centering herself and on communing with the rukh before Shelke signaled she was ready to begin. Ari moved over to watch as Shelke began, muttering incantations to herself as she pointed her wand at the pendant. Ari watched as a circle began to glow, the outer ring forming and then the eight pointed star slowly began to form inside of it. Shelke paused when the circle itself was complete, explaining to Ari how she had used a concentration of rukh to form the circle, basically infusing the item with a small reserve a rukh so it would be able to hold a command. Shelke then handed the tool to Ari.

Ari’s eyes widened as Shelke directed her to inscribe the runes on the magic tool. This was to be a simple healing tool. She talked Ari through concentrating the rukh into her staff before directing it into the item, instructing her to keep the rune for the ‘heal’ command firmly in her mind. Ari obeyed with a serious nod, blanking out her mind and forming a black canvas in her mind before picturing the rune on the canvas. As she focused on this image in her mind, her eyes were glued to the magical circle. Before her eyes, the rune inscribed itself into the tool and Shelke gave her an encouraging smile. Next, she focused on the rune for ‘life’ in her mind, her heart racing as that rune also appeared on the tool. When both commands had been infused, Shelke gave her a pat on the back before picking up the tool.

With a shift movement, Shelke used her wand to scratch across her own arm, small droplets of blood appearing before she activated the tool. Ari watched as the small scratch began to mend itself, amazed that she had helped to create the tool responsible for healing.

[563/500]


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Assignment Overview: Now that she has the research and the preliminary experience, she has to make one by herself.




Ari was nervous about the next step in her learning. She had watched and assisted Shelke with several different tools over the past two weeks, spending hour upon hour with the quiet woman in her laboratory, bent over the table in concentration as they manipulated the rukh and infused it into objects. Shelke had finally declared that Ariella had enough observational experience to attempt to make one on her own. Shelke assured Ari that she would be watching every step of the way but that she would only interfere if Ariella were about to make a disastrous mistake.

“Every crafter will have a failure or two before making a successful tool. You learn as much from the mistakes as you do from the fully functional tools. Now go, pick several items from the market, so that you have extras for when you folly.”

Ari noted the woman said ‘when’ not ‘if’ and tried not to let the words bother her. She knew that she was not likely to perfect the craft this quickly, but she hated the idea of failure. Ari made haste to the market, stopping at a stall that she and Shelke had visited numerous times for high quality wares. Though the trinkets and jewelry were typically small and simple, their quality was unsurpassed in Magnostadt as the seller personally inspected each item before placing it on the cart. As Ari browsed through the items, she found several small pendants that were round and flat, perfect for the inscription process. She bought three and prayed it would be sufficient for her trials and tribulations in creating a magic tool on her own.

The seller gave her a friendly smile, used to seeing the purple-haired magician poking around with Shelke, one of his best customers. He carefully wrapped the pendants, ensuring none of the metal would become scratched or sullied during transport, before accepting her payment and moving on to the next customer. Ari added in some extra coin, always happy to pay a bit more for high quality merchandise, especially when the quality of the item was of such importance. She rushed back to the lab and Shelke, eager to begin her attempts.

As always, she spent a chunk of time meditating, finding her center and focus as the rukh fluttered happily about her head. She found it easier and easier to commune with the rukh these days, the small glowing butterflies seeming to rejoice anytime she took notice of them. Feeling calm and in control of the flow of rukh around her, Ari began by picking out one of the pendants, getting a better feel for every pit and groove in metal surface. With a steady hand, she gripped her staff and touched the tip of it to the pendant, focusing her effort on the metal. As she focused, a circle began to glow on the surface of the malleable substance, the preliminary circle perfectly round. As she focused her will on the pendant, the intersecting boxes formed in a geometric pattern inside of the circle.

Ari grunted when a tiny imperfection in the metal caused the inscribed circle to melt too far, ruining the symmetry of the pattern. Shelke was glancing over her shoulder every few moments and frowned when she noted what had to have been a tiny air bubble in the metal. The pendant was useless now, though it was no fault of the yellow magician. It was impossible to detect every single flaw in their chosen magical items and so sometimes, even the best effort was ruined by something as small as a tiny air bubble in the wrong place. If the bubble had been even a hair to the left or right, Ariella’s attempt would not have failed. With a disappointed ‘tsk’, Shelke snagged the pendant and tossed it in a pile of others. At the end of the month, she would return all of the pieces to the seller, who would offer her a substantial discount on her next purchase. She waved at Ari to indicate the magician should begin again with the next piece.

Ari sighed and took a deep breath, settling the irritation in her head before picking up the next pendant. This time, she was able to get the initial magic circle inscribed without issue. She was making a weak spell involving a rather weak lightning strike in this piece and the command runes were fairly simple. Runes like ‘shock’ and ‘strike’ began forming in the small space between the two rings of the magic circle. As she worked, her mind drifted for a moment to her previous piece. The momentary distraction was all that was necessary to put an illegible command rune in the circle, ruining this pendant as well.

With a yelp, Ari rubbed the back of her head where she was now sporting a small bump from Shelke whacking her with her staff. She did not allow herself to become angry, knowing it was the other magician’s way of reminding her to remain focused. Ari took a few more minutes to meditate before making her third and final attempt. Her centered mind etched out the magical circle flawlessly before she focused on getting the appropriate runes to appear in the metal. This time, she did not allow herself to become distracted by her previous failures, not even noticing Shelke smiling as she watched. The commands were infused in the spell and the glow died down before Ari handed the pendant to her instructor to examine. Shelke made a show of looking deeply at the pendant, observing every small etch on the metal surface. With a smile, Shelke handed the tool back to Ari.

“Try it out!”

Ari grinned and held the pendant in her hand feeding a small amount of rukh into the metal to activate the imbued spell. With a smell of ozone and a small crackle, a small strike of lightning lashed out and danced across the surface of the lab table, leaving a small burn mark. She had finally created her first magic tool without help.

[1015/1000]


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Assignment Overview: One of the Professors at the Academy has asked for several weak magic tools for her class and she will pay!




Ari and Shelke were pouring over some books about more detailed runes which would allow for more complex commands. Shelke was far more talented than her when it came to the actual tool creation process, but Ari had more experience with command runes, given her family background, so they worked together to try and form something complex in as simplified manner as they could manage. When the door to the lab opened, they both looked up from the pages strewn across the table to see a teacher enter with a stern look on her face.


The woman certainly looked to be of Kou descent, the ornaments in the woman’s hair solidifying the look. Flutters of tiny black rukh danced around her, signifying the woman as a master of Strength Magic. Shelke idly straightened papers, her natural shyness demanding that she order her thoughts before speaking. Ari’s friendly nature took over, allowing the woman to stay silent as she address the teacher.

“How can we help you, miss?”

The teacher looked around the lab with a keen eye, natural curiosity shining through before she spoke, her voice seemingly devoid of emotion. The woman was obviously not one that warmed up to stranger easily.

“Yes, I am in need of Life tools for my students. Ten of them. I was told Shelke could handle this request. Are you Shelke?”

Ari smiled and shook her head before waving to the quiet woman behind her.

“No, I am Ariella, one of her students.”

Shelke stepped forward, shifting into a business mode that hid her shy nature.

“Ah, Miss Kian. Healing or constructs?”

“Constructs, if you please. No larger than about half a meter.”

Shelke nodded in understanding before tugging a small smile to her lips.

“I can do that for you, but it will take two full days. Is this acceptable?”

Miss Kian nodded and the two Instructors spoke in more detail about the order before the Strength Magician left and Shelke turned to Ariella.

“This will be a good chance to practice. We will begin tomorrow, I will speak with a metalworker myself to ensure the items are cheap but well-made and ready for in the morning. Get plenty of rest tonight, making that many items at a time is exhausting, but it helps to work and expand you magoi pool. Meet me here tomorrow, bright and early, please!”

Ari nodded in understanding, speechless at the idea that she was being trusted with an actual customer order. She cleaned up her papers, putting them neatly away before making her way home for the evening. She took Shelke’s advice to heart, eating a decent meal and then settling in to meditate for several hours before going to bed. The meditation had helped to clear her mind and she slipped into slumber without much effort.




The next day was dreary and dismal, not that Ari would have had a chance to enjoy it but it did not make the trip from the estate to the lab very pleasant. As she slipped through the heavy doors, she shook the rain from her hair, droplets splattering Shelke and making the woman yelp and jump to protect her reading. With a glare, she waved to draw Ari’s attention to another table where a variety of metal orbs sat, all the perfect size to hold in one’s palm. The surface was shiny and smooth and Ari could see her reflection in the metal, distorted by the curvature of the orb.

She immediately settled in to focus, falling into a meditative stance as the rukh fluttered around her. When she came out of the calming state, Shelke gave her the details of exactly what Miss Kian was wanting from them. Ari memorized the instructions, her mind swimming with rune combinations, forming and reforming them before sketching them out. Shelke nodded after looking over the design, approving of the commands listed on the paper. She left Ari to the complicated work, going back to her own research as Ari settled in to begin the first orb. She did not allow her focus to stray in the slightest as she worked on the initial design and then the more complex command runes. When the glow died away, she called Shelke over to examine and test the first orb, the Instructor giving a thorough scrutinizing to the item before testing it, a small life construct forming three meters away. She handed the orb back to Ari, approving the design and commands to be used for the other nine orbs.

Ari set five of the orbs to the side, knowing she would not be able to handle all ten in a single day, just creating the one had made her aware of the effort necessary to create the tools. She focused her attention on one orb at a time, completing each one and then handing it off to Shelke to test, not wanting to waste more precious magoi on having to activate the spell. By the time she had finished the last one, she was starting to get dizzy. After Shelke tested the tool, she arched a brow at Ari and nudged the yellow magician towards a stool. Ari collapsed onto the seat with a grateful smile.

“Go home, Ari. Get some rest, you are halfway done! Come back tomorrow all nice and refreshed.”

Ari nodded at the command, heading out the door and groaning as she was hit in the face with a wall of water from the storm raging overhead. It was going to be a long ride home.




The next morning, it was not raining, but the sun was not out, either. The chill in the spring air was nipping at Ari by the time she made it into the lab, but luckily Shelke had a warm fire going to chase off the lingering cold. Ari wasted no time in settling down to meditate and then work on the tools. She was thankful they were all the same, she didn’t have to think as hard about the runes after having spent the day before completing the same pattern several times. It took her the better part of the day to complete the last five tools, the natural light pouring through the windows dimming enough that Shelke had lit the lamps as she finished up. Just as Shelke finished testing the tools, Miss Kian walked in to check on the status of her order, giving an impressed grunt at seeing all ten orbs complete and waiting for her approval.

The Instructor was thorough, testing each orb before handing Shelke the payment. Shelke held up a hand to deny the payment before waving to Ari.

“She was the one that made them all, pay her. If you have any other similar orders, she would be happy to handle them. I prefer to make more specialty items.”

Miss Kian lmost looked angry and finding Shelke had not been the one to complete the order before sighing. The tools were more than satisfactory and if the quiet Instructor had not given Ariella credit, Kian would never have known. She handing Ari the payment, thanking her for the rushed order before packing up the orbs and making her way from the lab. Shelke gave Ari a thumbs up, congratulating her on first completed order before noticing that the Lightning Magician was snoring, asleep atop her notes.

[1231/1000]


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Assignment Overview: Several of Adius’ students have approached Ari and asked for her help in making him a tool. They pooled together their money to help pay for it. Make Adius a Magic Tool.




Ari had spent much time with Shelke in the lab recently and the time spent cooped up in the dark lab was starting to make the yellow magician a bit restless. Seeing the bright sunshine outside and hearing the birds chirping, Ari let Shelke know she would be going out for a few hours to study at a park. Shelke had idly waved her away, not even truly paying attention to the other magician as she poured over scrolls and tomes. Ari chuckled and slipped from the front door, a thick book tucked under her arm as she made her way to a nearby park.

The day was truly glorious, the epitome of spring with the budding grass and flowers dancing in the cool breeze, birds singing in the branches of blossoming trees, a few eager insects buzzing about. Taking a deep breath of fresh air, Ari marveled at the wonder of Magnostadt. Any other large city like this would have a particular odor that followed even into the parks, but magic was a truly marvelous thing. The further she stepped into the park, the more the bustling of the city faded away until she could barely hear the shouts of eager students. In the middle of the park was a small pond, tiny fish jumping to glimmer in the light before plopping back into the water. Spreading her cloak out on the ground, Ari settled down under a large tree and cracked open the book. Sunlight danced across the pages as she began reading on complex runes once more.

About an hour into reading, she heard a small group of people come into the deeper part of the park, no more than four or five people chattering amongst themselves. She could hear them making exclamations as they seemed to search for someone, bickering lightly as one declared she was certain she had seen them enter the park earlier. Ari arched a brow as the group stumbled into view, each of them wearing the trademark outfit of the Academy, complete with pointed hats. Ari still found the outfits ridiculous, but understood the desire to take away anything to identify a person aside from their talent with the rukh. She didn’t agree with it, but she understood it. Finally, one of the students spotted her and gave a happy crow.

“I told you guys! I knew I had seen her come in here!”

Ari realized it had been her the students had been searching for, so she closed the book on her lap and stood, glancing between the young adults. There were four girls and a boy in the group, all roughly her own age. She was curious as to why they would be searching for her, she was no longer nearly as recognizable as when she had been a student, though she supposed she had made enough of an impression that any students that had been there at the same time would probably remember her. Her looks did tend to isolate her, several of her old friends had started a rumor that she had been adopted due to the disparity in her appearance compared to the rest of her family. Her father had dark hair and eyes and her mother had blue hair and eyes. Adius had blonde hair and dark eyes, a blend of their mother and father. All three had very fair skin, their complexions much closer to what one expected from a Magnostadt native. Ari’s dark skin, purple hair and golden hues had made her seem foreign in the family, unless anyone had met her grandmother. Her mother’s mother had hailed from Heliohapt and had the skin tone to show for it, though her violet locks were an anomaly in the desert country. Clearing her throat, Ari drew the attention of the students, giving a small, amused smile.

“Is it me you were searching for?”

“Yes! You are Ella, right? Adius’ little sister?”

Ari almost stuttered at the mention of her family name, much more used to hearing Ari these days than Ella, but she recovered quickly, nodding at the female student. It seemed the girl was the leader of the group, the most outspoken and comfortable with approaching strangers.

“That would be me, the slightly less talented Negri child! What can I do for you?”

The leader clapped happily before bouncing over to shake her hand. The young woman was exuberant and hyper, practically shaking Ari’s arm off in her eagerness. Ari laughed softly and returned the shake before glancing at the others. The young man hung back, quiet and eyes focused on the ground. The leader spoke again, happiness radiating from her. Ari idly wondered if she had accidentally cast her ‘happy flowers’ in the park.

“Well, you see… we are students under your brother and it is almost the end of the class so we wanted to give him a gift. He mentioned that his sister knew how to make magic tools and we were wondering if you would be willing to help…”

Ari chuckled and waved to the open area in the grass in front of her, indicating the students sit. They scrambled to take seats.

“Now, what exactly were you wanting? I can make Lightning, Life, Slime, Strength or Crystal tools. Pick your poison.”

The leader listened to the types of tools she could make, humming and then talking quietly with the other students before turning back to Ari.

“Can you make him a Strength magic tool?”

The leader described what they were wanting, which was something that could create a giant fist of force. Apparently, it was some inside joke between Adius and the students, as all of the students were laughing. Ari hammered out the final details before listing off a price and said it would be ready in two days. They agreed to the price, giving her a handful of coins with a promise to pay the rest once it was complete. Ari dismissed them with a wave and the students rushed off, tittering to each other.




Ari spent a great deal of time, finding the perfect pendant for the magic tool, taking her brother’s preferences into account, finally seeking out a crafter to make a metal pendant with a design of a tree on fire imprinted into the front, knowing her brother would appreciate her attempt to display the combination of their parents’ elements into the pendant. It was ready the next morning and the gold gleamed brightly, polished to perfection. With a small skip to her step, she accepted the pendant before heading to the lab, getting a grunt of greeting from Shelke, who did not even look up from her studies.

Ari fell into the pattern she had established when creating items, meditating to center and focus herself on the rukh before turning that intense focus to the pendant. First came the base magic circle, followed by the geometric lines across the middle and, finally, it was time to add the rune commands. Given the point of the tool was part of an inside joke, Ari smirked, forming the commands with care, the symbols appearing one by one around the base circle. Shelke glanced over her shoulder a few times, arching a brow at the commands with a snort or snicker but otherwise silent to keep from breaking Ari’s focus. At last, the tool was complete and Ari called Shelke over to test the item.

The other magician looked skeptical but fed magoi into the item, bursting out in laughter as the tool swept up sand particles as it formed what initially looked like a fist before the phantom hand formed an obscene gesture. Shelke was still rolling on the ground laughing when the young man from the day before knocked on the door and walked into the lab. He looked confused at the laughing magician on the floor before ignoring her to focus on Ari. Ari grinned broadly before handing him the pendant.

“Here you go, give it a try!”

The teen looked nervous but complied, finally understanding Shelke’s laughter as the normally quiet young man loosened a booming laugh in the room. He turned back to Ari still laughing, digging the rest of the payment from his pockets. Ari accepted it with a chuckle, eyeing the boy up and down. He was pale and dark, taller than her by a full head.

“So, do you like it?”

The boy nodded with a laugh.

“It is perfect It has the joke we were going for while still being a legitimate defense, if needed. I think he will like the personal touch provided by his little sister. He speaks of you fondly, you know.”

“Well, that is good. We have our ups and downs, but I love his perfect little face.”

Ari noticed the boy blushed when she mentioned Adius’ face, an idea sparking in her mind.

“Say… you guys must really like my brother, going through all this trouble. Usually a ‘thank you’ and a hand shake is sufficient…”

The boy blushed again, scratching nervously at the back of his head and shrugging.

“He’s just a really good teacher, that’s all…”

Ari let it go but watched as the young man wrapped the pendant carefully after polishing the fingerprints off the surface. She was glad she had been able to create something for her brother, he had always been supportive of her and it was nice to know she could give something back. She would have done the crafting for free, but the students had looked so proud to have saved up the coin necessary that she could not turn it down. With another quiet ‘thank you’, the boy slipped from the lab, Shelke quickly approaching to mutter to Ari.

“Did he think he was being subtle about his crush?”

Ari’s laughter echoed across the lab as she turned back to her books.

[1500+/1500]


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